Some Countries May Be Paying For Half Of Your Trip & Here's Why
International travel will most likely need some nudging to go back to the pre-pandemic stage, as countries around the world close borders in the fight against one of the worse virus attacks in modern history.
While the wanderlust spirit may still be strong, the upheaval caused by COVID-19 has made many people stay home and reduce external contact. As a result, the travel industry is hard-hit and the near future looks bleak. Just in Japan alone - a country which has enjoyed an abundance of tourists all year round - tourist figures are down by 99.9%.
Therefore in a bid to rescue this industry, some countries have decided to offer a huge offset of travelling expenses.
It is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions in Italy. Among its most famous attractions are the Greek temples of the Valley of temples in Agrigento and Palermo's famous opera house. Apart from its historical culture, the island is also known for its white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters making it a hot spot for snorkeling.
Italy has faced an estimated $1.2B loss to its tourism industry due to the country’s severe lockdown. The safety measures have severely affected Sicily, where tourism drives the local economy with over 15M annual visitors.
To entice tourists to visit, the Italian government will be collaborating with local tourism authorities, allocating 50M euros (approximately SGD77.7M) to help foot your bill if you choose to visit. This fund will cover half of the flight and a third of hotel expenses, with free tickets to local attractions such as museums and archaeological sites.
The discount vouchers is slated to start once their lockdown ends and will be available on Sicily's official tourism website.
Likewise in Japan, the government is also seeking to boost domestic tourism by paying for a portion of travel expenses once the pandemic is controlled.
While details are still not released, a whooping ¥1.35T (approximately SGD17.8B) will be put into a travel programme once coronavirus infections subside. According to Matador Network, there is a chance that travellers may get half their travel expenses subsidised through this programme.
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