The Bermuda government has launched a purpose-built website for professionals, investors, entrepreneurs and digital nomads who are able to work remotely, including post-secondary students, to apply for the new “Work from Bermuda” one-year residential certificate.
Eligible applicants can submit their completed form, together with supporting documentation and the US$263 fee, by visiting www.workfrombermuda.com. Applications will be processed by the Bermuda Department of Immigration, and a response will be provided within five business days.
Leader of the country, Premier, the Hon. David Burt, JP, MP stated, “If you are working remotely from home, please take the opportunity to explore the option of working remotely from Bermuda for the next year. Bermuda is safe, Bermuda is friendly, Bermuda is close and Bermuda is beautiful.
“To date Bermuda has successfully managed the coronavirus pandemic and our COVID-19 testing regime is the most stringent in the world. This has kept transmission of the virus to a minimum which allows our residents and visitors flexibility not seen in other jurisdictions.
“As a holder of a residential certificate you will be a long-term visitor in Bermuda and we are ready to share our vibrant culture and unique brand of hospitality to cure the coronavirus blues. No need to be trapped in your apartment in a densely populated city with the accompanying restrictions and high risk of infection; come spend the year with us working or coding on the water.
“On behalf of the Government and people of Bermuda, I look forward to welcoming remote workers, self-employed digital nomads and university students engaged in remote learning to our shores.”
A “Work from Bermuda” certificate holder is entitled to reside in Bermuda and work remotely for a full year. A certificate holder’s dependent family members may also reside on the island (provided the remote-working family member demonstrates they can financially support their dependents).
A separate application is required for each dependent family member, and each application is subject to the prescribed application fee. Renewal of the certificate after 12 months will be subject to a fresh application.
Dependent family members residing on the island may volunteer their time to support Bermuda’s many not-for-profit organisations and registered charities.
Roland Andy Burrows, CEO of the Bermuda Business Development Agency, said: “The trend towards remote working has been growing for some time across a number of industries in financial services and international business, and it has been accelerated by COVID-19.
The “Work from Bermuda” certificate allows professionals and higher-education students to continue to conduct their business in a safe and virtually COVID-19-free environment while benefitting from everything Bermuda has to offer. This includes our ideal geographic time-zone, our modern infrastructure from wi-fi to electric cars and our sophisticated island lifestyle.”
John Huff, President and CEO of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers (ABIR), noted there has already been significant interest from the global insurance industry and ABIR members. He said: “The potential for this opportunity is extraordinary. Re/insurance is Bermuda’s flagship industry and we are ideally located between New York and London, two other major industry hubs.”
“Insurance is a relationship business,” Huff continued. “Our market represents more than 35 per cent of the global property and casualty reinsurance market and so we have a lot of stakeholders around the world.
There are a number of C-suite executives, risk professionals and advisors who currently have the ability to perform their roles remotely and are already familiar with the benefits of Bermuda and would welcome the opportunity to work from here. Whether they choose to base themselves from Bermuda for the entire year or simply to wait out the stress of COVID-19, the perfect work-life balance awaits them.”
Chris Evans, co-founder of software start-up Flyt Ltd (which recently sold to Just Eat, a UK online food order and delivery service), spoke about his decision to relocate to Bermuda and the trend towards remote working during last year’s inaugural Bermuda Tech Summit hosted by the BDA.
He said: “This is great news not just for Bermuda but for the digital nomad community. I moved to Bermuda in 2019 with my wife and two young daughters and have found the island to be incredibly welcoming. I encourage anyone who is thinking about it to apply.
For me personally, it wasn’t just the time zone that made Bermuda appealing but the fact that the island is free of viruses like Zika and, thankfully, also virtually free of COVID-19. Previously I was based in California where my family enjoyed the sun and lifestyle and so the weather here, and the ability to be on the beach and the water, is also a huge bonus.”