Then, as more and more vaccines were approved and available, the number of people vaccinated steadily increased.
Now, some tourist hotspots are taking the ‘game’ a step further by offering tourists the chance to get vaccinated in a bid to attract more travelers, after 2020 brought the tourism industry in these places to their knees.
Among these countries are smaller but famous tourist destinations like the Maldives, as well as larger countries like Russia and even the United States.
Cities and states in the United States now allow travelers to be vaccinated
When the vaccination campaign was rolled out in the United States, some American authorities feared that travelers would try to be vaccinated in the country.
Months later, some cities and states in the United States volunteered to provide foreigners with COVID-19 vaccines in a bid to safely attract more tourists amid COVID-19.
New York City announced in May that it would begin vaccinating tourists 16 and older in popular places like Times Square and the High Line, and later in Brooklyn Bridge Park and Central Park, a plan that had been approved. by the governor of the state, Andrew Cuomo.
Mobile vaccination centers at these locations have started offering tourists the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine without the need to make an appointment.
The state of Alaska has taken a similar move in an effort to revive summer tourism, which has been devastated by COVID-19 restrictions.
On June 1, the state began allowing arrivals at its major airports to be vaccinated with at least the first dose of Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.
« Anyone traveling to Alaska or through Alaska will be able to get the vaccine if they wish.Alaskan Department of Health and Human Services director of public health Heidi Hedberg said at the time, announcing the decision.
Several other U.S. states, including Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, and Texas, also offer free COVID-19 vaccines to foreigners and tourists.
The Maldives will offer free tourist vaccines once they vaccinate their population
The Maldives, a small archipelagic state in South Asia famous among wealthy German and American tourists, is also offering COVID-19 vaccines to travelers in an attempt to revive the tourism sector, and therefore its economy.
“Visit, Vaccinate, Vacation” will provide a convenient way for tourists to access vaccines, but the program will not be launched until the indigenous population has been vaccinated. The main idea of opening up tourism is to provide reasonably safe tourism with a minimum of inconvenience“, Said Tourism Minister Abdulla Mausoom in May.
The same month, Maldivian authorities announced that 410,000 tourists had visited the country from the start of the year to May 8.
Russia sells COVID-19 vaccines to tourists but does not give visas
Russian authorities also offer COVID-19 vaccines for foreigners, but not for free. Travelers are now offered three-week vaccination plans for overseas travelers with prices ranging from $ 1,500 to $ 2,500 in addition to flight costs.
However, some travelers may experience difficulties in getting to Russia because the Russian consulates still do not issue a visa.
« The product is ready, but the issues of visa support and legal entry for foreigners wishing to receive the Russian vaccine have not yet been resolved.“, Said President of the Russian Travel Industry Union (RUTI) Andrei Ignatyev.
Free COVID-19 vaccines for tourists in Abu Dhabi since June 11
Abu Dhabi, another famous tourist destination, without much ado, offers tourists with entry visas free COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer or Sinopharm.
Vaccine appointments can be booked through the UAE’s COVID-19 vaccination app since June 11, using passport information. At the time of vaccination, an entry visa or entry stamp is required.
So far, more than six percent of the UAE’s total population have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Indonesian island of Bali also offers COVID-19 injections
The resort island of Bali has also started offering Chinese Sinovac and British AstraZeneca vaccines to foreign tourists through packages that include vaccinations. The plan was developed by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia.
At the same time, Indonesian airline Garuda (GIAA.JK) began administering free COVID-19 vaccines to holidaymakers and travelers, with 20 passengers given the option to be given the Sinovac vaccine on day one. .
So far, only 5.5% of the total Indonesian population has been fully immunized.
Serbia (not anymore)
Serbia also unveiled a plan to vaccinate tourists in April this year. However, the government withdrew from the plan, which prompted large numbers of Bosnian residents to travel to the neighboring country to be vaccinated.
The country has managed to get its hands on more vaccines than the number of its population.
The government has canceled the offer of vaccines for tourists until further notice after more than 40,000 foreigners took advantage.
Serbia has so far administered at least 5,318,975 doses of COVID vaccine.