Barbados is seeing more Americans than any other nationality working there since it launched a new programme in July giving people cooped up at home during the COVID-19 pandemic the chance to swap their environment and relocate to the island for up to a year.
The Barbados Welcome Stamp has drawn 675 applications from US citizens, making them the largest nationality enjoying basking under blue skies on white-sand beaches while still working.
Access to the island was made easier in October, when American Airlines resumed flights from Miami International Airport to Grantley Adams International Airport. The carrier hopes to make the flight five times a week.
To date, there have been 1,693 applications from individuals and groups, accounting for 2,796 persons, Barbados authorities said.
The stamp costs $2,000 for individuals and $3,000 for families. Applications processed by September had brought in $1 million — a figure tourism officials say is rising daily.
“It has been fantastic — the announcement of the welcome stamp went viral,” said Eusi Skeete, US director of Visit Barbados. “Within the first week, we received more than 1,000 applications from around the world! We continue to encourage remote workers to take full advantage of the Barbados Welcome Stamp, as it’s truly a mutually beneficial initiative for both travellers and our island.”