Fiji’s tourism industry, like many around the world, is in need of some TLC and the latest bubble proposal could be the key to bringing Aussie travellers back to the beautiful 333 island nation
There are a few bubble proposals up in the air at the moment, but we really hope this one eventuates.
Fiji’s Prime Minister, Frank Bainimarama, has proposed a ‘Bula Bubble’ to allow international visitors back into the country.
“Tourists are really after sunshine, the ocean, sand, nice food, great people, so Fiji is one of those attractive, close locations in the Pacific,”
Tom Manwaring, chairman of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents
Australia and New Zealand are Fiji’s two biggest sources of international visitors and with a little over 100,000 employees out of work, this travel bubble could, quite literally, save lives.
The ‘Bula Bubble’
Fiji has only had 18 Coronavirus cases, and no deaths, and they want to keep it that way, so the plan would come with conditions.
Under the proposed plan, travellers would either have to self-quarantine at home for two weeks prior to arriving in Fiji and then be cleared by a negative COVID-19 test, or they could serve their two-week quarantine at an approved hotel or resort in Fiji.
Tourists would not be able to freely move around the country, like before, but could choose to stay in a couple of different places if they so wished.
According to Mr. Bainimarama, having travellers returning to Fiji isn’t just about the money. He said that “the long-term cost of complete closures and unemployment would risk doing immense harm to Fijians mental and physical health”.
What needs to happen?
As the Australian borders remain closed, we will need to see a shift in the international travel rules here in Australia, before this proposal could work.
Currently, international travellers arriving in Australia have to be isolated for two weeks, which means, it is unlikely people will jet off for a holiday in the South Pacific for two weeks (in isolation), to then come back and be in isolation at home for the same amount of time.
Until these rules are relaxed, it doesn’t seem feasible. But we live in hope.
A spokesman for the Department of Health says the Government is not negotiating any travel bubble with any countries other than New Zealand at this stage.
However, the Australian Government is ‘closely monitoring developments’, so we can stay hopeful that a phased travel reintroduction will happen as soon as it possibly can.
Share this story