Renay
Devoted April 2020

Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid

Renay, on September 10, 2020 at 1:32 PM Posted in Honeymoon 8 20
Saved
Reply

We recently returned from our week long stay in paradise, and I thought I'd give you guys a little update. If anyone is unsure of international travel right now, or undecided on where to go, I hope this helps.

We stayed at Couples Tower Isle in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. It was beyond perfect. Seriously cannot say enough about this place and Couples Resorts in general. Originally we planned to go in April right after our wedding, so we started looking in the fall, and contacted travel agents in January.

I did a lot of research (I am a bit of a control freak), and chose Couples, and CTI specifically before contacting travel agents. The first TA I spoke to took a very long time to get back to me, so I reached out to 2 others. All three came back with different quotes, and all higher than what I worked up booking on my own. They all wanted to push other resorts, and 2 even pushed different countries. Then I had a friend suggest another TA. I reached out to her, she set up a time around my schedule to talk on the phone, we discussed the resort I had chosen and I told her that I wasn't against another resort, but this was the one from reading I thought would fit us the best. She asked what we liked about it, gave us ideas to think about other resorts, and within 2 days sent us estimates for CTI and 3 other resorts. She actually got us about $1,000 less than I had worked up on my own. We booked with her at the beginning of February. When COVID hit and life came crashing down around us less than a month before our wedding, she sent me an email letting me know that Jamaica had closed its borders, and what our options were. She also made a point to apologize for our situation and acknowledged how devastating this was to our whole wedding, and let us know that rescheduling/canceling could be decided any time before the end of the year. She let us take our time to figure out what was best for us, and then helped us navigate everything when we were ready. She was a godsend. If anyone is in need of a TA, I'd be happy to message you her info. She is located roughly an hour from us in central Illinois, but we did everything electronically and she has clients all over.

Neither have us have ever taken a trip like this before. We had never flown, and had never been gone for more than a couple days. Traveling was a little stressful to think about with a pandemic, but honestly was super easy, safe, and a much needed relief from life. If you can afford to take a trip, do it. We would do it again in a heartbeat. 10 days before our trip, we got tested for covid (this is currently required for entry to Jamaica). We got our negative results, and then 5 days before the trip we filled out "travel authorization forms". These forms were fairly simple, asked screening questions about current health and exposure risks, recent travel, and required us uploading our negative results. Processing times were supposed to be less than 48 hours, but we were one of the first groups that had to provide tests so they were still working out the kinks. We applied Monday for our Saturday flights, and heard nothing by Thursday night. My TA called us that night, and when we told her we were still waiting, she called a contact in Jamaica at the ministry of health. We had our results a few hours later. I woke up to them Friday morning and cried with excitement. I was so scared we would have to cancel again.

As far as the travel itself, it was perfect. We wore our masks in the airport, and on the flights, and during transport to the resort. We provided the airline with our travel auths at the first airport (we had a layover). Landing in Montego Bay, we went through a medical screening (some basic questions about health and exposure), showed them out negative tests, and had our hands sprayed with sanitizer every few minutes by military personnel. After about 1 hr & 45 minutes in the car, we arrived at the resort. They took our temps, asked us to sanitize our hands at the station by the front desk, and whisked our bags away while we checked in. Return home was just as smooth. They have an excellent system in Jamaica and their protocols are much more respected than here in the states.

As for the stay itself, a complete and total dream. Really. A week (we were only supposed to have 5 days but our TA scored us 2 extra free when we rescheduled) in paradise with unlimited food, booze, and love. We did Dunns River Falls (which is a MUST if you'll be in the Ochi area), and a catamaran ride, both of which were included with a stay at CTI. We ate the absolute best food of my life that week. We make jokes that we ate like Hobbits, but we really did. We didn't snack at all, but we usually had 5 meals a day. And I even lost 8lbs on the trip. We spent our days hopping from pool to pool to sea to sand. It was glorious. I even managed to only get a little burnt, and came home tanner than I have ever been (still pale).

All in all, we spent less than $5,000 on flights, the stay, excursions, private transport 2 and from the airport, and souvenirs - everything.

In a nutshell, if you are wanting to take an international honeymoon, DO IT. Beyond worth it, and we felt 100% safe. If you need a place to stay, Couples Tower Isle is INCREDIBLE. I already miss my home there,

Here are some of my favorite photos


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 1


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 2


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 3


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 4


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 5


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 6


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 7


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 8


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 9


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 10


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 11


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 12


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 13


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 14


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 15


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 16


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 17


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 18


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 19


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 20


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 21


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 22


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 23


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 24


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 25


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 26


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 27


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 28


Jamaica Honeymoon and travel during covid 29


20 Comments

Latest activity by He Hu, on October 30, 2020 at 12:37 AM
  • Yasmine
    Rockstar October 2020
    Yasmine ·
    • Flag

    Omg your pictures are amazing. Thank you for this post I will definitely be looking into this resort. My fiance and I are on the fence about traveling outside of the country right now, but this definitely helped. I'm glad you had an amazing time

    • Reply
  • Lisa
    Rockstar July 2022
    Lisa Online ·
    • Flag
    These pictures are so beautiful! It looks like you had a great time. Thank you for sharing all the info! Glad your trip was a success!
    • Reply
  • Margaret
    Master October 2020
    Margaret ·
    • Flag

    Beautiful pictures, glad it all worked out for the two of you. Congratulations.

    • Reply
  • Bo Miller
    Expert December 2020
    Bo Miller ·
    • Flag

    Beautiful pictures it looks like it was an amazing trip! Congratulations!

    • Reply
  • Molly
    VIP September 2020
    Molly ·
    • Flag

    That looks awesome! I so glad your guys had a great time!

    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Honestly we felt safer in Jamaica than we felt at home! Definitely look into it. They are amazing Smiley smile

    • Reply
  • Yasmine
    Rockstar October 2020
    Yasmine ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    I definitely will, thanks again!
    • Reply
  • Ingrid
    VIP October 2020
    Ingrid ·
    • Flag
    Thank you for sharing. We will be traveling to Jamaica in about 4 weeks. We're getting married and honeymooning at Sandals South Coast. We're really excited because we've never been out of the country before.
    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    We hadn't either! You guys are going to absolutely love it. I've heard excellent things about SSC! One of my NPs at work LOVES it there. Enjoy!
    • Reply
  • L
    Expert September 2020
    ·
    • Flag
    Looks amazing and I second all of this. We just traveled internationally for our honeymoon and it was very safe. Masks were required in the airport and on the plane, hand sanitizer was required to use at checkpoints, and we had to take a Covid test to get into the country. Honestly, we felt safer there than in America. Also when you are on a plane new air is constantly being circulated through the vents so youre not sitting there breathing the same air for hours (family member is a pilot lol)
    If youre considering it, word of warning is do your own research on the travel requirements of the country. Our travel agent screwed up and had been telling us for months we didnt need a Covid test but when we got to the airport they said we did and we ended up getting charged a fortune for it. But it wouldve been free in America.
    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    Oh no! That's terrible! They checked our documents in America before even letting us on the first flight!
    Km sorry that happened, but glad the rest of it was enjoyable ♡
    • Reply
  • A
    Super September 2020
    Alli ·
    • Flag
    Beautiful!
    • Reply
  • Milada
    Super October 2021
    Milada ·
    • Flag

    Thank You so much for sharing. We're planning our honeymoon now to take next year and we're thinking about Jamaica. I'm a planner by nature as well so I was doing my research and needed something to let me know that the outcome will be good. You guys looked like you had an amazing time. Congrats!

    • Reply
  • Mckinzie
    Savvy May 2021
    Mckinzie ·
    • Flag

    Thanks so much for sharing! We're trying to plan our honeymoon for May 2021 and I want to travel outside of the US but we were worried about cancellations and overall COVID restrictions. Your pictures are beautiful! So glad you enjoyed your honeymoon!!

    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    The outcome will be amazing! I cannot recommend Jamaica enough, especially Couples Tower Isle!!

    Thank you!! Happy planning!

    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Do it!! It was so worth it to get away from the craze for a while. Where ever you guys go, you'll enjoy the time to yourselves!

    • Reply
  • Michael
    Michael ·
    • Flag

    We are about to commit to a week in Jamaica in November! Thanks so much for this info. One question. I totally understand the masks in transit to/from but we are not interested in spending our hard earned money to be on vacation wearing masks. In fact, to be honest, If we need to wear masks after we get situated at the hotel, I would rather stay home.

    Can you tell me in a bit more detain what that looks like?

    • Reply
  • Renay
    Devoted April 2020
    Renay ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    We wore ours during transit, but our resort did not require them once we arrived. They had signs suggesting them when social distancing was not possible, but to be honest with you we never wore them except in the gift shop. The staff all wore them, and a few people put them on to stand in line at the buffet, but most people did not. I think it was required for the spa, but we did not go there. The way I seen it, we were all tested and screened 100 times. I was there to enjoy my trip. We were required to wear them when we went to dunns river falls on the grounds, but not on the falls themselves. I hope that makes sense. I'm happy to answer more questions if you've got them!
    • Reply
  • Michael
    Michael ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    That's perfect. It sounds like exactly what we want. A tiny piece of (mostly) the way things were before all of this started earlier this year! I'm excited! Living should be fun and we haven't had much lately.

    • Reply
  • H
    Just Said Yes April 2021
    He Hu ·
    • Flag

    Thank you for the detailed info!!!

    • Reply

You voted for . Add a comment 👇

×

Related articles

WeddingWire celebrates love ...and so does everyone on our site! Learn more

Groups

WeddingWire article topics