Travel & Expat Lifestyle Magazine

Moving to Barbados

Barbados is an island located just east of the Carribean Sea, in the Western Atlantic Ocean. It had been under British rule for over three centuries, but gained its independence in 1966. It is a small country that only takes up 166 square miles. Its official language is English, but Bajan and Hindi are also recognized as official regional languages. Its ethnic make-up is mainly Afro-Bajan.


Work Visa

You can work in Barbados as a foreign citizen if you are granted a work permit, but it is difficult to obtain. This usually takes about 6-8 weeks to process. Certain CARICOM (Caribbean community) nationals are allowed to work in Barbados without a permit. Foreign workers get social security benefits like Barbados citizens. It is easier to get a job if you have a special skill and can fill a job that no natives can.

Short Term Work Permits are valid for six months. Your employer must complete your Immigration Department C-3 form on behalf of you.

They must submit that form, and the following:

  1. Police records from Barbados
  2. Police records from homeland
  3. Cover letter from employer
  4. Four passport photos
  5. Fees

Long Term Work Permits are valid for a maximum of three years. You must submit the following:

  1. C-1, C-2 Application forms, duly completed
  2. Medical form, completed by doctor
  3. Four passport photos
  4. Two character references
  5. Police certificate of character from homeland
  6. Evidence of qualifications
  7. Cover letter which explains your job and what you will be doing

If you are going to set up a business in Barbados, you must also submit the following:

  1. Proof of funds
  2. Copy of the Certificate of Registration/incorporation of the company

Student Visa

If you wish to study in Barbados, you must have a student visa, which is issued by the Department of Immigration. To apply, you must fill out the appropriate forms, and have them stamped by a school official. You must submit these, along with a valid passport and four passport photos, to the chief immigration officer. It generally takes four weeks to process.

Moving Pets

Before you move your pet into Barbados, you must obtain an import permit from the Chief Veterinary Officer. A Veterinary Officer is required to examine your pet before it can leave customs. If you have a dog or cat, it must be free from infectious diseases.

Animals can be imported directly with just a permit from the UK, Ireland, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, St Lucia and St Vincent. Pets from all other countries are required to sit in quarantine for six months in Britain before a permit can be issued.

Other Information

Click here for information about real estate in Barbados.

Click here for information about the history of Barbados.

Click here for maps of Barbados.


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