Slowly, but surely, countries around the world are beginning to open back up to international visitors. The immense blow the global economy and tourism industry took due to the pandemic forced hard-hit destinations to offer creative and alluring ways to bring travelers back — some are even enticing their own citizens to holiday at home and boost the local economy.
Those itching to get out and about, feeding their wanderlust as soon as possible, can take advantage of these travel incentives around the world.
First Come, First Serve
While admittedly not the most welcoming approach to attracting tourism, but one of the safest, Madeira is offering free COVID-19 tests to visitors when its borders open to international tourists July 1. The Portuguese island will welcome visitors presenting negative for COVID-19 on arrival, or 72 hours prior to departure. The tests will be paid for by the Madeira government.
One of the first countries to reopen for international visitors, Iceland will also offer free COVID-19 testing for all arrivals. Just keep in mind, guests testing positive for COVID-19 will have to self-isolate for 14 days.
New Forms of Insurance
While the risk of contracting COVID-19 anywhere at any time is still a real threat, having some travel insurance is key for travelers — Cyprus is offering a safety net — sort of. The island’s government is wooing travelers by offering to cover accommodations, food and medical (while in quarantine) for tourists who contract COVID-19 while visiting.
Scratch Italy’s Back, They Scratch Yours
One of the hardest hit nations by the pandemic, Italy lost $1.1 billion on March and April tourism alone. In order to get some of those much-needed tourism dollars back, Sicily is utilizing a multimillion-dollar fund to draw in visitors, including promotional flight discounts, lower hotel rates and vouchers for tourists to use in the near future.
South of the Border
Hotels and resorts across Cozumel, Cancun and Grand Costa Maya are enticing travelers to come back to Mexico with buy-two-get-two-free options. The new campaign is targeting travelers who want to be among the first back at the newly opened resorts and hotels by offering discounts on rental cars, free nights for kids and deals at golf courses and theme parks.
Catch up with the thrills and summer fun you might’ve missed earlier in the season with buy-two-days-get-two-days-free tickets from Universal Orlando in Florida. This is a limited offer and comes with important safety guidelines.
For would-be summer travelers in sought-after destinations like Switzerland and Japan, residents are being enticed to stay home and support the local economies.
In an effort to reignite domestic tourism, Switzerland is working on a billion-dollar “Switzerland First” tourism recovery program, offering citizens $200 vouchers to spend on domestic hospitality.
In Japan, government officials could offer residents up to $184 a day in vouchers to stay and play domestically, as the country is still closed to international travelers.
THE BEGINNING OF AUTUMN in America offers a time to savor the last precious moments of summer against the countryside’s mosaic of reds, yellows, oranges and purples. Before long, the chill of winter will enter the air and the trees will grow barren. This is not news to most of us. Indeed, leaf peeping has become ubiquitous. Most states have 24-hour toll-free hotlines to keep you informed of nature’s progress ... and then there’s the traffic. It seems the entire population of New York City and Boston climbs behind the wheels of cars on congested New England roadways. Thus we’ve tried to avoid the mainstream routes so you can truly appreciate the kaleidoscopic splendor. After all, a fall foliage road trip provides more than a mere drive. It also incorporates picking apples, tasting cider and hot doughnuts and leaving your vehicle behind to take a much-needed scenic walk to a lonely waterfall, where autumn’s colors reflect off the water.
With technology advancing faster than ever, children globally are becoming attached to devices. Adults too. Our Netflix queue and ever-expanding inbox call our names even when we’re on vacation. We carry distractions with us everywhere, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to truly connect with your loved ones.
The cruise industry responds to the COVID-19 pandemic with updates on cancellations and rebooking policies. Here’s an update.
This summer, family travel at The Peninsula receives an upgrade with the debut of Camp Peninsula, a children’s experience that recreates the spirit of camping right in the heart of Beverly Hills. The journey begins with a special welcome from Peter Bear, the hotel’s lovable mascot, at check-in. After taking a picture with the life-sized teddy bear, kids will be whisked away by a Peninsula Camp Counselor to a luxurious guestroom where a charming teepee awaits. An afternoon of camp-themed games and activities, including a hotel-wide scavenger hunt, rounds off the family-friendly experience, fun for children of all ages. Whether it’s a luxe staycation or an extended holiday, Camp Peninsula is an ideal way to ensure the little ones are happy campers.