Published On: Tue, Jun 2nd, 2020

Which countries offer to pay for your holiday after lockdown?

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As the global pandemic continues, many popular holiday destinations are being hit hard by the closed borders and grounded flights. 

As countries begin to reopen to tourists this summer, some locations are hoping to lure visitors back with discounts, and in some cases, even offers of a partially paid-for holiday. 

The latest to take part in this trend is the city of Cancún in Mexico. Over 200 private businesses in the holiday hotspot known for its beautiful beaches have set up a private initiative to offer travelers money off. 

The theme of the initiative is the number two. For instance, hotels will offer two nights free for every two nights booked, or a free stay for two children when two adults book. Tourists would get two days free car hire for every two days they book. 

Puerto Morelos, Tulum, and the Caribbean island of Isla Mujeres, eight miles off the coast of Cancún, are all also expected to take part in the initiative when they reopen. 

Isa Mujeres will likely also follow the scheme - getty
Isla Mujeres will likely also follow the scheme – getty

“We are very happy and above all, committed because of the great participation in this campaign of the different state hotel associations as well as the tourist industry generally,” said Roberto Cintron, President of the Cancun, Puerto Morelos and Isla Mujeres Hotels Association, of the move.

“It’s designed to reactivate holidays to our destinations after the crisis caused by Covid-19.” Tourism will reopen in Mexico from June 8 and the initiative will start a week later on June 15.

Sicily, Japan and Bulgaria have also brought out similar plans in recent weeks. Sicily was the first to do so in early May, and the regional government is planning a €50 million campaign to attract tourists back to the island in the autumn. 

The plan will include subsidising travellers who book flight and accommodation packages, by paying half their air fare. 

One free night of accommodation in three will also be offered as well as free entry to Sicily’s numerous world-class museums and archeological sights, including the Temples of Agrigento and the Villa Romana del Casale. (For details, keep an eye on the regional website visitsicily.com). 

There have also been reports that Italians will be offered €500 to go on holiday within the country, to boost Italy’s domestic tourism, though these are as yet unconfirmed.

Sicily's proposed subsidised travel plan is the most generous to international travelers - getty
Sicily’s proposed subsidized travel plan is the most generous to international travelers – getty

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