I’m thrilled to see the trend lately whereby more countries are eliminating testing requirements for travelers. You can now add another popular tourist destination to the list of countries taking this approach.
Maldives cuts testing for vaccinated visitors
The Maldives is heavily reliant on tourism, and reopened to visitors several months into the pandemic. Up until now the Maldives has required visitors to get tested, but that will be changing shortly. As of Saturday, March 5, 2022, the Maldives is making the following changes to entry requirements:
- Vaccinated travelers will no longer be required to present a negative PCR test result prior to arrival
- Vaccinated tourists who stay on inhabited islands will no longer be required to present a negative PCR test on departure
This is fantastic news, and takes some of the hassle out of visiting the Maldives. Travelers will still need to fill out a traveler health declaration prior to travel, but that’s about it. Of course keep in mind that individual resorts can still choose to have a testing requirement (given that many properties are on their own islands), but I suspect most won’t.
It’s so nice to see this “return to normal”
While it goes without saying that testing is an important tool for battling coronavirus, I’m pleased to see testing requirements for travel increasingly ending. After borders reopening, this is the single biggest thing that can be done to make international travel easier.
The concept of needing to test is great in theory, but has so many problems:
- It’s still a massive money grab, with PCR tests in many places costing well over $100 per person, and in some cases $200+ if you need them on short notice
- Testing requirements are so highly uncoordinated, especially when you’re traveling to multiple destinations in a short period; it can often take hours to get tested multiple times for a bigger trip, and that doesn’t even factor in the cost
- The entire testing for travel industry is extremely shady, as I’ve outlined before
It’s great to see more countries taking this approach, and especially place like the Maldives, where testing was prohibitively expensive.
The Maldives is eliminating its testing requirements for vaccinated travelers as of March 5, 2022. This is fantastic news, as vaccinated travelers will no longer need to take PCR tests. We’ve seen this trend in lots of countries in recent weeks, so here’s to hoping this becomes the norm soon enough.
What do you make of the Maldives eliminating its testing requirement for vaccinated visitors?
(Tip of the hat to Dale)