So you’re all packed for your trip to Bermuda. Swimsuits? Check! Sunscreen? Check! Flip-flops? Check!
But have you checked your visa requirements? The last thing you need is something to go wrong with your permission to travel – that’s going to put a damper on your holiday (to say the least).
From visa entry requirements for Bermuda through duty-free allowances and prohibited items, we’ll cover everything you need to know to enter this beautiful country.
How Do I Get to Bermuda?
Whether you’re traveling by private plane, yacht, commercial flights or a cruise, Bermuda is easy to reach and enter. There are many direct flights available to the islands. It is just a short seven-hour flight from London or just three hours from most North American airports on the east coast.
Many cruises include Bermuda on their stopover schedule and the island is well set up to receive private planes and boats of all kinds.
Do I Need a Visa to Enter Bermuda?
Bermuda is a British Overseas Territory meaning that if you’re a UK or EU national, you most likely have the freedom to travel to and from the country without restriction, whether it’s for business or pleasure. It’s also very easy for visitors from the US to travel as well.
Bermuda can only be directly accessed via the UK, the USA and Canada, so visitors who don’t live in these countries will need to transit through them. This means that you’ll need a multiple-entry visa or residence permit from one of those countries. For these visitors, both your passport and your visa must be valid for at least 45 days beyond the date of departure from Bermuda.
As a rule, most visitors from the US, UK, Australia, Canada and other EU destinations don’t need a visa to visit Bermuda. This handy table is an excellent reference for visa requirements. Visitors from some countries, such as India, may be able to apply for a visa waiver.
However, there are some key requirements for all visitors, irrespective of which country you come from:
- You must have booked your accommodation in Bermuda before you arrive.
- You can stay for 21 days without a visa. If you apply for an extension, you can even stay for up to six months. If you do decide you want to extend your trip as a visitor, you must apply to the Bermuda Department of Immigration (extensions aren’t automatic, but they are usually granted).
- You must have a ticket booked for a return or onward flight.
- You will need two blank pages in your passport.
- You must have at least 90 days’ validity left on your current passport from the date of your exit from Bermuda – but it is better to have at least six months’ validity.
What Are the Duty-Free Allowances for Bermuda?
There are five kinds of duty-free allowances for travelers to Bermuda – passenger, crew member, transfer, awards and inherited effects. You should always check with authorities if you have any questions or doubts about whether a category applies to you or whether you can claim an allowance under that category.
- Passenger Allowances
If you’re traveling to Bermuda on a visit or short holiday, then the passenger allowances are the ones that most likely to apply to you. These include:
- Personal tobacco products and alcoholic beverages not exceeding:
- 200 cigarettes
- 50 cigars
- 500 grams of tobacco
- One liter of wine
- One liter of spirits
- You also have a duty-free allowance of up to $50 BDA on other accompanied personal goods that will remain in Bermuda.
If you’re a Bermuda resident, you have an additional duty-free allowance of up to $200 BDA on other accompanied personal goods that were obtained outside the country.
- Crew Member Allowances
Members of any type of crew, be that a ship or aircraft arriving in Bermuda by air or sea are entitled to crew member duty-free allowance on accompanied personal goods.
- Transfer of Residence Allowance
Anybody moving to Bermuda for the first time should look into whether they are entitled to a “transfer of residence” allowance (TRA) on any personal, professional and household effects.
- Award allowance
Importing goods that were awarded overseas in recognition of “meritorious achievement or conduct” could entitle you to a duty-free allowance on your award. It’s best to check with the Bermudian authorities before you try to claim this allowance – you want to make sure there aren’t any issues before you try to bring in your Olympic medals or your Nobel prize.
- Inherited effects allowance
Importing inherited personal effects could entitle you to “inherited effects” duty-free allowance on these items. It’s always good to check.
Declaring Accompanied Personal Goods
Are there items you can’t bring into Bermuda?
Common sense applies here. Drugs, weapons, stun guns, sprays and obscene materials are just some of the things you can’t bring into Bermuda. Firearms, ammunition and explosives are likely going to need a permit.
Travellers should particularly note the restrictions on items made from endangered animals. This means any jewelry, bags (handbags included), belts and shoes; even if you bought those items legally in another country. If you want to bring them into Bermuda, you will need to carry a valid CITES certificate.
Visitors should also note that medical marijuana is strictly prohibited, even if it has been prescribed by a doctor.
There are some additional limitations around plant and animal matter, prescription medications, pets and other items. Check this page for more details.
Can I take my pet on holiday to Bermuda without a permit?
The short answer is no, you can’t just Johnny Depp your pet into Bermuda – but you can bring them in as long as you have the right paperwork.
Every animal entering Bermuda must have health documents and an import permit, which is issued in advance by the Bermuda Department of Environment and Natural Resources. It doesn’t matter if you arrive by yacht, private plane, commercial flight or any other means of transport – the requirements still apply.
If you don’t have the right paperwork, your pet will either be immediately returned to your country of origin or the poor thing will be destroyed as there aren’t any quarantine facilities in Bermuda. Don’t risk it!
When your pet arrives with you, they may be subject to an import duty (tariff) of up to 25% of their value.
That’s It! Enjoy Your Trip to Bermuda!
As you can see, the entry requirements for Bermuda are simple and straightforward.
They’re designed that way to ensure visitors can easily travel to and from this beautiful island and enjoy everything it has to offer.
So now that you’ve checked your Bermuda visa requirements, you’re good to go! Bon voyage!