Last updated: 6 Jan 2022

Antigua and Barbuda


Low-lying and volcanic in origin, Antigua & Barbuda form part of the Leeward Islands group in the northeast Caribbean and have certainly adopted the notoriously ‘Caribbean' way of life. This is a place to take things easy, stroll around markets, sip the fresh juices of coconuts and pineapple and meet friendly locals. Antigua & Barbuda's way of life is governed by water.

Crab-race: ideal for the very lazy, this eccentric sport is staged in certain bars once or twice a week. A punter may win enough to pay for the next round of drinks, but the moderate stakes are unlikely to make anyone a millionaire!

Play Antigua & Barbuda’s national game of Warri - an ancient board (‘count and capture’) game that was traditionally played using shells placed in cups: a National Warri Festival is held every year. Go for a bush safari in Barbuda. Stop for a picnic in the shade and watch for the wildlife amongst the sparkling salt ponds.
Capital:  St John's (ANU)
Currency:  East Caribbean Dollar (XCD)
Language:  English. There are some Spanish-speaking communities. 
Dialling code from SA:  + 268
Time Zones: UTC / GMT -4 (6 hours behind South Africa)
Public Holidays 2022: 

Jan 1; Apr 15, 18; May 2; Jun 6; Aug 1-2; Nov 1; Dec 9, 25-27

Side of the Road: Left
Best Time to go: December to April
Best For: Island relaxation
Plugs: 220/110 volts AC, 60Hz. American-style two-pin plugs are standard. Some hotels also have outlets for 240 volts AC; in this case European-style, two-pin plugs are used.
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink. 
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities, however visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended, although doctors will require cash payment regardless of whether you have health insurance.
Customs: It is customary to greet before engaging in transactions or conversations (i.e., Good Morning / Good Afternoon / Good Evening). Dress code is informal but conservative. Swimwear should be reserved for the beach / poolside. 
Local Offences / Laws: Dressing in camouflage clothing is illegal. Homosexuality is illegal. 
Travel Warnings / Tips: Tropical reef fish are poisonous to eat.
Duty Free: The following items may be imported into Antigua & Barbuda without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco
• 1L of wine or spirits
• 170ml of perfume
Prohibited Imports: Prohibited items include arms and non-prescription drugs. Restricted goods requiring a licence include vehicles, plants, fruits and vegetables, pharmaceuticals, chemicals and firearms.

Travel Alerts

Last updated: 09/09/2021

Antigua and Barbuda is open for travel from most countries with various health measures in place. Passengers are required to wear a monitoring bracelet and may be tested for Covid-19 on arrival

Entry restrictions

  • Passengers travelling from or who have been in Brazil, India, or South Africa are not permitted to enter Antigua and Barbuda.
    • This does not apply to flight crews.

Form requirements

  • Passengers are required to complete a Health Declaration Form upon arrival in Antigua and Barbuda.
  • Passengers arriving for medical treatment must also have a Letter of Request for Medical Transfer from the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of their originating country to the CMO of Antigua and Barbuda, a medical report detailing their condition, a letter of acceptance from the receiving institution, and the details of their stay in Antigua and Barbuda.

Test requirements

  • Passengers aged 6 years and older must hold a negative RT-PCR test certificate obtained within 7 days prior to departure. This also applies to passengers in transit.
    • This does not apply to passengers arriving for medical treatment, who must instead hold a negative RT-PCR test obtained within 72 hours prior to departure.

Quarantine and testing on arrival

  • Passengers will be subject to screening and temperature checks on arrival. Passengers with symptoms of Covid-19 may be isolated as determined by Health Authorities.
    • Passengers in transit or crew members who require an overnight stay must proceed to a government approved hotel or facility.
  • Passengers who hold proof that they are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and at least 2 weeks have passed since the administration of the full vaccine dose will be permitted to stay in a bio safe/certified accommodation. Passengers not staying in certified accommodation may quarantine at home for 48 hours, subject to the results of a Covid-19 test taken on arrival at their own expense.
  • Passengers who are not fully vaccinated or not vaccinated will either be permitted to stay at a bio safe/certified accommodation or be subject to quarantine in a government approved facility at their own expense as determined by the Quarantine Authority.
    • Passengers who are either permitted to quarantine at home or at a government approved facility will be required to wear a monitoring bracelet according to the Quarantine Authority regulations.

This Information is intended as a Guideline.

Visa Requirements

Visas are not required by SA passport holders, provided:

a) the stay is no longer than six months
b) they possess a passport with a minimum of six months validity from their date of departure
c) they have an onward or return ticket
d) they have confirmation of accommodation
e) they can produce evidence of their ability to maintain themselves in Antigua and Barbuda

Cruise ship visitors who would normally require a visa would not require one provided that they arrive in Antigua and Barbuda in the morning and depart the same evening.
'In-transit passengers' travelling within the same day, who normally require a visa, do not need a visa for entry into Antigua and Barbuda, provided they have proof of their onward journey, and they do not leave the 'controlled space' at the airport.

For passengers who DO require a visa for entry can apply for an evisa on


SA Representative

The SA High Commission in Kingston, Jamaica is accredited to Antigua & Barbuda.

Travel Health

Compulsory:  Yellow Fever (Dependant on Country of Origin/Stopover)
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis A & B, Typhoid, Tetanus, Polio