With low Covid-19 rates and plenty of signature sunshine, Caribbean islands and hotels are creating ‘work from paradise’ packages to encourage people to move their home office overseas. Olivia Palamountain reports
Forget working from home, why not work from paradise? Anguilla is one of a number of Caribbean islands offering their shores to the legions of employees currently working out of office.
Applicants who meet the requirements can work and live in Anguilla for up to 12 months thanks to a special new visa costing US$2,000 per individual or US$3,000 per family (defined as a party of four), with US$250 for each additional dependent.
A dedicated online concierge at the Anguilla Tourist Board will guide applicants through the application process, with additional information supplied on schooling, shopping, banking, transportation, religious establishments, shipping of personal possessions and other essential data.
With only three confirmed cases on the island and no fatalities, Anguilla was designated Covid-19 free by the World Health Organization (WHO) in June 2020, and is currently assessed as “No Travel Health Notice: Very Low Risk for Covid-19” by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). It is also the Caribbean island with the lowest incidence of cases.The island’s borders reopen to regular passenger movements on November 1. Easiest access from the UK is via Antigua, with both British Airways and Virgin offering scheduled flights, or with Air France/KLM via Paris/Amsterdam into nearby St Maarten.
Onward transfers via scheduled inter-island plane (from Antigua) or boat including public ferry or charter (St Maarten) will also be available from November 1.
“Anguilla offers everything people seek for that life-affirming balance between work and play,” says Hon Parliamentary Secretary for Tourism, Quincia Gumbs Marie.
“Some 40 per cent of our travel applicants are expressing interest in longer stays, attracted by our safe and stress-free environment, the connectivity working professionals require, an amazing culinary scene, spectacular beaches, great activities on the water and on land, and a thriving music scene. Our guests are welcomed like family – it’s easy to make friendships that last a lifetime here”.
Anguilla is not the only place offering ‘work from paradise’ packages. Antigua, St Lucia and the Dominican Republic are getting in on the action too.
Curtain Bluff, Antigua
Antigua’s new visa program, “Nomad Digital Residence” (NDR) allow visitors to “live and move freely” across the territory and benefit from Antigua and Barbuda’s personal income tax-free status.
The island nation has experienced a very small number of Covid-19 cases and has an effective system of containing community spread, making the country one of the safest environments in the world.
To align with this new visa program, Curtain Bluff resort has launched an “Extended Stay” package, offering a 50 per cent discount on stays for 21 days or more booked in the Hulford Collection. Rates start from US$665 per night, plus tax and service.
Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, St Lucia
St Lucia is one of the safest Caribbean destinations open to US travellers, with very few active Covid-19 cases and zero virus-related deaths to date.
The “Work from Paradise” package at the Sugar Beach resort includes private VIP round-trip airport transfers, a private terrace with a pool, a private butler for duration of stay, a welcome amenity with bottle of Veuve Clicquot champage, breakfast for two with smoothies, daily lunch, a private three-course dinner for two with chef and sommelier meet and greet, one 50-minute private Swedish massage, private cabana access at the main pool with fresh fruit and water daily, and indoor and outdoor workings space with free wifi.
The package starts at £800 per night night and is available in one-bedroom accommodations.
Eden Roc Cap Cana, Dominican Republic
At Eden Roc Cap Cana guests can work and learn from paradise with the property’s two dedicated packages that cater to working parents as well as children learning remotely this season.
The “Family Staycation” package offers an extended stay experience for the whole family (ranging from 20 to 30 days). These longer-term stays are accommodated in the property’s collection of stand-alone villas. Each one is equipped with a full kitchen, private free form pool, living areas and dining space, along with a 24-hour butler and private chef.
On-demand offices are available as an in-villa set up for remote workers. The program also includes unlimited Spanish lessons and piano lessons for children, to keep them busy while the parents work (“schoolcations” are also on offer at Marbella’s Puente Romano resort). Rates start at £27,000 for 20 nights up to £40,000 for 30 nights.