The Maldives and Puerto Rico are getting ready to fully welcome tourists to their land for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic forced them to close their borders to travelers. With the virus having different effects on different countries, it has been pretty hard to predict when anything will open, so it’s interesting to hear that these two countries are looking to have tourism resume again so soon. Regardless, this doesn’t mean that travel to these countries will be picking up again the same as it used to be. Let’s look at their individual plans to keep their nations safe while still allowing guests, as well as when travel will be possible again to each country.
Believe it or not, Puerto Rico will be open incredibly soon. Technically, the country never fully closed its borders, but the actual tourism spots have remained mostly closed. However, on July 15th, 2020, Puerto Rico plans to enter a new phase in their steady re-opening that will allow for levels of tourism that are far higher than they have seen in months. The country introduced a set of guidelines for the tourism industry to follow back in May, and all companies must follow these before they are allowed to start business again. These guidelines mean that with this new phase certain restaurants, shops, and other businesses will be able to open with lowered capacities. Some of the safety measures that they have in place include thermal scanning and health screening at the airport for anyone that arrives, as well as free coronavirus testing.
Much like Puerto Rico, the Maldives created a set of guidelines that will allow their tourism industry to slowly begin resuming business. The full plan can be read over here, but interestingly, this plan largely doesn’t affect cruise travel. Instead, cruise ships must follow guidelines in place from the International Maritime Organization if they wish to travel to the Maldives. If they follow these rules, cruises can visit the Maldives starting August 1st.
It’s been interesting (if not a bit unnerving) to see how much the tourism industry has changed since the pandemic fully began, but it’s a relief to see nations getting to the point where they feel comfortable allowing travelers once again. Of course, American travelers will have to wait a bit longer to visit either of these locations via cruise ship, but that date will come soon enough!