With international restrictions constantly changing, and winter lockdown taking hold across many countries, travel opportunities seem few and far between. Over the past month or so, safety measures have been reprioritised, and the travel industry has been experimenting with innovative ways to keep tourists safe – and their business afloat.
A unique ‘travel bubble holiday’ package, which has been launched by Qatar Airways, is the company’s latest solution. If you’re a Qatar citizen, you can now go on holiday to a private island in the beautiful Maldives without any restrictions.
It’s the first time a country has offered to veto their COVID-19 travel restrictions for tourism. The idea is that everybody on a Qatar flight to the Maldives has provided a negative COVID-19 test, and forms a holiday ‘bubble’.
How does it work?
Once you’ve booked, you’ll be asked to sign a passenger declaration form. You’ll also need two negative PCR tests before boarding your flight: one which is no more than 72 hours old, and another rapid PCR test taken just before flying.
You’ll need to take one more PCR test when you return to Qatar, but there are no additional requirements – which is what makes this package unique. Passengers won’t need to quarantine in the Maldives or Qatar, and there will be no need to fill out an Exceptional Entry Permit or be given permission to re-enter Qatar (which is currently needed for any other travel into the state).
Qatar’s unique ‘travel bubble holidays’ are offering the travel industry – and its customers – a controlled, safe holiday option which might set a precedent for tourist options moving forwards.
Qatar advises you can book your travel bubble holiday package between now and 24 December, and you must take your holiday by 7th January 2021.