Health Society & Culture Tourism

Maldives to reopen on July 1 – but with expensive caveats

New coronavirus precautions will see the Maldives become an even pricier destination

One of the world’s most expensive holiday destinations is set to become even more costly as the Maldives plans to introduce compulsory COVID-19 testing for all arrivals, among a raft of new health and safety measures.

Sprinkled across 1,192 palm-painted islands, the honeymoon hot spot relies heavily on tourism – accounting for 28 per cent of its GDP and over 60 per cent of its foreign reserves – and received more than 1.7 million visitors last year, a figure it expected to surpass in 2020. But with its air and sea borders closed to tourists since March 27, due to the pandemic, that number is expected to plummet.

In an attempt to woo back visitors, Minister of Tourism Ali Waheed has announced that the Maldives will set itself apart as a ‘safe tourism’ destination and a ‘COVID-free country’. So far, the Maldives has recorded five deaths and 1,457 cases, the majority in the densely-packed capital of Malé.

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Source URL: Google News

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