As the Solomon Islands prepares to rejoin the world after more than two years of isolation, results of a recently-conducted Ministry of Culture & Tourism/Tourism Solomons survey show the country’s tourism sector is ready to welcome visitors as soon as the decision to reopen the border has been finalised.
According to the resultant ‘COVID Preparedness in the Tourism Sector’ report, the tourism sector is well ahead of other segments of the population in terms of COVID-readiness and more than 70 percent of the 100 business operators polled are positive to a border re-opening and tourists returning.
Exceptionally high vaccination rates in the tourism sector show 87 percent of resort managers/owners are fully vaccinated and 65 percent of all staff are fully vaccinated.
The number of the country’s key tourism operators’ vaccination rates are even higher with 88 percent fully vaccinated according to the survey.
The survey also showed 98 percent of operators were willing to take part in the MCT’s ‘Tourism Minimum Standards Extra-Care’ training and implement COVID-safe protocols.
Other key findings:
- 44 percent of tourism operators have a COVID-safe plan in place
- 68 percent of operators have in-place methods for enforcing the “no vax, no mask, no entry” policy
- 70 percent of operators have access to RAT test kits
Compiled on March 11, 2022, the survey was carried out by staff from Department of Tourism (MCT), Tourism Solomons (TS) and tourism officers from Honiara City Council (HCC) and consisted of 18 questions designed to assess the readiness and willingness of tourism operator to implement COVID-safe protocols.