• Island getaway

    Island getaway

    Seychelles has announced that its borders are set to be re-opened to international visitors – a move much welcomed by the country’s beleaguered tourism sector.

    As of 25 March, tourists will be allowed to visit on the condition that they present a negative COVID-19 test result (conducted within 72 hours prior to arrival), as reported by Reuters. They will also be required to stay in hotels certified as complying with coronavirus measures. Tourists from South Africa will not yet be allowed.

    Before the COVID pandemic, the island nation’s tourism industry employed more than a quarter of the labour force, and accounted (directly and indirectly) for around 55% of GDP. However COVID-related restrictions have had a severe impact on the Indian Ocean archipelago’s economy. Tourism revenues fell by 61% in 2020, as restrictions cut arrivals by 70%.

    A COVID-vaccination roll-out has been under way in Seychelles since January.

    9 March 2021
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images