Fancy Mauritius? Then face the hurdles

By | Category: Travel rumblings

From 1 October, the Mauritian government has been allowing visitors from the United Kingdom and returning residents to go to Mauritius.

Mauritius beaches may be inviting but are the Mauritian authorities?

But if you thought it was going to be easy and welcoming, you are in for a surprise.

To start with, you have no choice of tour operator or travel agent. All bookings must be made on the Mauritian Tourism Promotion Agency website.

You must take a COVID-19 test no more than 7 days before your departure and carry documentation with you proving a negative test result on entry. The UK government says that you should not use the NHS testing service to get a test but arrange to take a private test.

When you arrive you must take another COVID-19 test and then another on day 7 and day 14.

You must spend a period of “in room” quarantine in a government-approved hotel on a full board basis for 14 days on arrival so no popping out to a restaurant or a coffee shop.

If during the fourteen days If, at any point, you receive a positive test result, you will be transferred to a public medical facility for treatment.

Now comes the good news. Having lost fourteen days holiday time you are now free to roam the country at your leisure without having to undergo any more checks.

More to the point is whether you would be prepared to go through all this in order to holiday in Mauritius.

Another country on the UK green list, Dominica, is also introducing stringent measures.

Any arriving passengers must have completed an online questionnaire 24 hours before arrival, and have a PCR swab test with a negative result taken up to 72 hours before arrival.

This result has to be uploaded and submitted with the questionnaire before you will even be given approval to enter the country. Without this email you will not be allowed to board the flight coming into Dominica.

But would you buy an airline ticket or a holiday before you get your PCR result back? It looks as though you decide where you want to go, get your test and then, on recent of a negative test, you race around and book whatever you can within 48-72 hours of your result. Wait longer than that and you will need another test.

Again I ask, would you go through all this to go anywhere?

But, you might say, a country can’t do too much to protect its residents from a pandemic.

The answer is that you can’t have it both ways. Either you want visitors in which case you have to make travel and entry a little easier or you refuse entry to visitors for a bit longer and hang the consequences on your tourism industry and your economy.

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