Bali to Offer Travellers Vaccines in Bid to Boost Tourism

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Bali to Offer Travellers Vaccines in Bid to Boost Tourism

Famed for its volcanic mountains, Instagram-worthy beaches and rice terraces, the resort island of Bali in Indonesia is keen to boost tourism by offering Covid-19 vaccinations to travellers.

The South-East Asian nation’s government said that vaccines would be available to both domestic and international tourists.

Plans include free access to AstraZeneca and Sinovac for domestic travellers, and paid access to Sinopharm and other jabs for foreign travellers, reported the Financial Times.

The initiative was announced by Sandiaga Uno, Indonesia's Minister for Tourism and the Cultural Economy.

No launch date has been set for the plan which remains subject to approval by President Joko Widodo.

The global pandemic has devastated the economy of Bali, which relies heavily on tourism.

The paradisiacal island surrounded by the Java Sea has been a prime holiday destination for decades thanks to its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and thriving coral reefs and seas.

Bali to Delay Reopening Plans 

Plans to reopen the island to international holidaymakers are also set to be delayed.

"We were targeting end of July, beginning of August, but we just have to be mindful of where we are in this recent spike [in coronavirus cases]," Uno told Reuters.

Case numbers have surged across Indonesia in recent weeks, including in Bali.

Uno told journalists he wanted Bali's daily coronavirus infections to drop to 30 or 40 per day before reopening the country to visitors.

Domestic travellers can continue to visit Bali from across the country, but they must now have a negative PCR test before entering the island.

Visa-free travel to international visitors is suspended and only those with pre-approved visas who are willing to quarantine for five days in Jakarta can enter as a tourist.

Bali also has plans to attract more digital nomads to the island with a five-year visa and zero tax on earnings from overseas initiatives, according to Reuters.

More than six million travellers visited the island in 2019. In 2020, the island welcomed around 1 million tourists before the Covid-19 pandemic halted visits.

Source: The National