Vaccination tourism: you get a vaccine, for free, on vacation!
Health tourism, travel to a city to receive a certain type of medical care or wellness treatment, is not a new phenomenon. However, the slow pace of development of the COVID-19 vaccination program in many countries around the world due to the lack of vaccine doses has led to another type of offer: the controversial vaccination tourism. You get the vaccine, for free, on vacation!
In the European Union, only 22,9% of citizens received at least one dose, a figure that drops to 8.4% in terms of complete immunization, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
You get the vaccine, for free, on vacation!
The Maldives is the latest country to offer the vaccine to citizens on holiday, after the United States, Russia, Serbia and Cuba.
"Visit, get vaccinated and go on vacation!" This is the slogan launched these days by the Maldives to attract international tourism. The Minister of Tourism, Abdulla Mausoom, explained that the initiative is part of the plan to reactivate tourism in this island in the Indian Ocean.
However, the head of Tourism did not speak on the date for starting a vaccination program and said that vaccination will not start until the entire population of the country is completely immunized. It is about half a million people who are expected to be immunized in August this year. At present, 51.4% of the population of the Maldives has already received a dose, while in the tourism sector this figure increases to 90%.
Alaska is the first American city to offer vaccines to tourists.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy has announced that they will offer vaccination to tourists arriving in the state starting June 1, to an extent included in a package of aid for the tourism industry. According to state officials, the high vaccination rate in the United States - compared to other countries - could make Alaska an attractive tourist option internationally.
In Florida, the free vaccination campaign against COVID-19 for those over the age of 65 has attracted tourists from other parts of the United States, Canada and Latin America. According to the American press, over 50.000 people (whose main address is outside the state of Florida) were vaccinated in just a few weeks.
Given the criticism received, Governor Ron DeSantis had to tighten the conditions for receiving vaccines, given the illegalities detected. As of January 21, an identity card and invoices are required to justify at least three months of annual residence in Florida before the person can register at a vaccination center.
Sputnik V has announced a program for all those who want to travel to Russia.
The Sputnik V vaccine is not yet approved in the European Union, but that does not stop the Russian authorities from offering this vaccine to travelers arriving in the Eurasian country. The program could start in July, although no further details are provided. Groups of German tourists have already traveled to Moscow thanks to trips organized by the German Bureau of European Tour Operators. During the trip, tourists were vaccinated in a private clinic, which was set up in a hotel, and then visited the capital without restrictions, according to Euronews. However, Russian authorities have not yet officially issued a "green light" for vaccinating tourists.
Cuba. Beach, Caribbean, mojitos and vaccine.
Vaccination packages have also been offered to tourists wishing to arrive in Cuba. TeleSUR shared images with the text: "Beach, Caribbean, mojitos and vaccine, all in the same place. What do you think about this offer? Do you travel to Cuba to get vaccinated? ”. You get the vaccine, for free, on vacation!
In the video, Vicente Verez, director of the Finlay Vaccine Institute in Havana, assures that this year the entire Cuban population - about 11 million people - will be vaccinated and that "Tourists will have the option, if they want, to get vaccinated in Cuba". Verez explains that the country intends to produce 100 million doses of its vaccine, Sovereign 2, the most advanced of the four currently in the testing phase. He points out that this excess production will also serve to provide vaccines to other countries, such as Vietnam, Iran, Venezuela or India.
In Serbia you can choose the vaccine.
A travel agency in the Italian city of Bologna is organizing vaccination tourism in Serbia. The agency claims that it already has over 500 reservations for the trips it organizes in the Balkan country, where tourists receive the COVID-19 vaccine for free. They are also allowed to choose the type of vaccine they prefer: Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sputnik V or Sinopharm Sera. These are the four types of vaccine purchased by the Serbian authorities, which have made their country one of the most advanced in Europe in the vaccination campaign.
Also, according to current information, they are a few countries that allow entry those tested / vaccinated or immunized without further restrictions and without quarantine. In order for those vaccinated to be eligible for unrestricted travel, they must have both a dose administered or a dose according to the vaccine administered and at least 10 days after the booster.