The Vaccinecation Has Officially Arrived

In The Maldives, vaccine tourism is now a thing that exists

Kihavah Huravalhi Island Baa Atoll, Maldives
Kihavah Huravalhi Island Baa Atoll, Maldives
Ishan @seefromthesky

The dawn of the age of the vaccinecation is upon us.

If you’ve been following along with the vaccine and travel saga, you may have seen this one coming: the Maldives, one of the first countries to reopen to tourism following the pandemic, has announced a new plan — one they’ve coined the “3V” scheme — to attract tourists. It stands for visit, vaccinate and vacation, and it symbolizes the Maldives’ intent to offer the chance to get vaccinated to incoming tourists in an effort to revive a once-booming industry.

According to a new report from CNN, the country’s minister of tourism, Dr. Abdulla Mausoom, has confirmed that once the entirety of the countries population is inoculated (more than half of which already is), vaccines will be made available for tourists upon arrival — a perk not dissimilar to any other you might receive on the island archipelago.

Of course, there are a few stipulations. The first, and most significant, is that the vaccine in question will be of the two-dose variety. Meaning: tourists will need to plan to stay in the Maldives for a minimum of three weeks in order to receive both doses. The second is that, as it stands now, the minister has not ruled out the possibility of charging tourists for the jab. Lastly, and not least of all, there is the matter of access to the vaccine on that level. Almost every other country on Earth is currently in the throes of its own vaccine distribution, tourists be damned, so it’s hard to imagine how this might be possible.

All of that said, there are far worse places to wait around for the vaccine, and if you have the funds to hang out in the Maldives for a month, you probably aren’t overly troubled with the cost of one, either. Moreover, the minister for tourism does not seem particularly concerned where vaccine availability is involved. When questioned about whether or not they would have access to enough to pull off such a tall task, Mausoom told CNBC: “I don’t think supply’s a problem in Maldives because our population is relatively small.The quota we get from the various organizations and friendly nations also will help.”

Mausoom confirmed that the country has already received vaccines donated from India, China and the World Health Organization’s Covax scheme and is expecting additional from Singapore, CNN reported.

So if you’re still on the waiting list to receive the jab where you live, maybe it’s time to start looking at flights instead — particularly because, while the Maldives seems like the first to pilot the vaccinecation, we doubt they’ll be the last.

What a time to be alive.


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