As Saba eased its entry requirements, more flights are being added which is positive for the island’s connectivity and an increase in the number of visitors. Windward Islands Airways International (WINAIR) is executing 5 weekly flights to Saba, two times per day, early in the morning and in the late afternoon. For now, flights are not carried out on Wednesdays and Thursdays, but more flights may be added, depending on the demand. The Edge ferry comes to Saba from St. Maarten twice a week, on Wednesdays and Fridays, departing at 9 am from Simpson Bay and departing Saba at 3:30 pm.
The Makana ferry is operating four times a week between Saba, St. Eustatius, and St. Maarten. The schedule will soon also include the St. Kitts route. Makana trips can now also be booked online https://www.sabaferry.com/makana.
Connectivity is gradually increasing with Saba’s easing of entry measures and the subsequent return of visitors. Day trippers no longer have to show a negative COVID-19 test result and both vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons are welcome. The relaxed requirements make it easy for day-trippers to come to Saba.
Day-trippers are expected to wear a facemask in public areas and in taxis. Visitors and residents alike still have to fill in the online travel form EHAS before traveling to Saba and the EHAS of St. Maarten before their return to St. Maarten. Visitors who come for more than 24 hours still must present either a negative PCR or antigen test result, and non-vaccinated persons no longer have to quarantine. Special measures still apply which include on-island free-of-charge testing on days 2 and 5. View sabatourism.com for details.
Day-trippers and stay-over tourists, are starting to pick up, said Director of Tourism Malinda Hassell. The demand is gradually picking up and with the limited accommodation capacity, she encouraged people to book early.
“Also, with the ease of Saba’s entry requirements, we look forward to this making it more attractive for our visitors. Yachts are also returning to Saba which further helps to raise the visitor numbers and we also expect the return of Sea Dream which will have various calls in 2022. We are looking at an optimistic recovery for the coming quarter,” said Hassell. In order for our economy to recover, it is important for the tourism industry to stabilize, stated Commissioner of Tourism Bruce Zagers. “With eased travel restrictions, it will be important that we continue to market Saba not only as of the unspoiled queen but as a safe destination. Together with our stakeholders and the Tourist Bureau, continued efforts must be made to ensure that the Saba destination becomes more well known.”
Recent exposure in regional and international media is expected to contribute to Saba’s destination awareness. Recent press visits from North America have resulted in the publication of a number of articles and social media mentioning. These publications include Islands.com, MSN/ Travel Pulse, Canada morning live show, a podcast on Travel Pulse Caribbean, and a blog on Globetrottingmama.com from Canada. There were also features in Caribbean Journal, Canada Travel and Lifestyle magazine, and PADI media group. Well-known St. Maarten radio personality Mercedes “Elektra” Wyatt visited Saba to shoot material for her vlogs on her new YouTube channel. All three connectivity partners and on-island partners are being highlighted in these vlogs which are being launched weekly.