Happy Saturday! Today's featured headlines deal with how countries all around the globe are gearing up for summer 2021. With summer holidays right around the corner here is a short but comprehensive list of countries allowing tourists through its door.
Greece was one of the first countries back in February to announce they would open to travelers in the summer. Since then a lot has happened to allow this one questionable notion to move forward. The COVID-19 pandemic has meant strict travel restrictions across the world. Visiting other countries for tourism has been off the cards for most, however vaccine program rollouts have made many countries feel secure in opening their doors. The country’s Tourism Minister, Harry Theoharis, said the government aspires for all tourists to be welcomed into Greece by May 14, with such strict safety protocols: “Tourists will be welcome if, before travel, they are either vaccinated or have antibodies or test negative.” The hope is by June 1st, all major tourist destinations such as beaches, museums, restaurants, etc. will be open.
Italy has announced plans to vaccinate all residents on the country’s holiday islands as a matter of urgency to help kickstart local economies dependent on tourism. This move is in direct response to the example set forth by Greece. The plans have struck outrage in larger mainland tourist areas such as Rome and Florence who will not be part of this scheme. Capri, Ischia, Procida, Aeolian Islands, Egadi Islands, Pelagie Islands, and the Tremiti Islands are amongst the few to hopefully be open come June 1st.
The lack of coronavirus-related testing restrictions for arriving visitors continues to make Mexico one of the most viable options for American travelers, many of whom have already received at least a partial vaccination. Aviation experts are reporting the number of international flights between the United States and Mexico scheduled this summer will be higher than it was in 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic. Hotels and resorts in popular Mexican Caribbean destinations reported bookings of 50 percent for the Spring Break and Easter holiday travel period, a significant increase from coronavirus-reduced occupancy averages.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday it was too soon to say whether international summer holidays can go ahead this year. Britons are among Europe's highest-spending tourists and many surrounding holiday countries who are opening their doors this summer hope to welcome the Brits. An exact date has yet to be determined on when and if international travel will be allowed for residents. This uncertainty has left many planning weddings, vacations, and family visits abroad anxious. The whole of the United Kingdom has also shut its doors to leisure travel.
The Maldives is currently open to U.S. visitors who are fully vaccinated, and unvaccinated travelers who acquire a negative coronavirus PCR test no more than three days prior to travel. Maldivian Tourism Minister Abdulla Mausoom has said the country’s tourism industry has so far vaccinated 90 percent of its frontline workers, and about half of the overall population has received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. This successful vaccine rollout makes the Maldives an excellent destination for the summer 2021 holidays. US officials have urged American citizens to not travel to the Maldives.
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