Malta plans to start welcoming tourists back to the island from June and will launch an aid and incentivise package for the sector worth some €20 million.
Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo today outlined Malta’s recovery plan for the sector, which has been badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said the plan is for vaccinated tourists to be able to visit Malta free of restrictions by presenting a digital ‘green passport’, while non-vaccinated tourists will still be able to submit a negative PCR COVID-19 test, taken a few hours before travelling.
Particular focus will be placed on British tourists, with Bartolo hailing the UK as one of Malta’s most important source markets. It also has one of the world’s highest vaccination rates.
Eighteen airlines, including Air Malta, are expected to fly to Malta this summer, making up some 70% of the routes the island had back in 2019. Four of these airlines are new, while tourism authorities are also in “advanced talks” with a further four airlines who are interested in opening up routes to Malta.
“While global tourism collapsed, Malta made sure it worked more than ever to ensure connectivity remains a priority,” Bartolo said.
In the coming weeks, the government will launch several aid and incentive packages, worth €20 million in total, to target specific touristic sectors ahead of the summer months.
These will include schemes for visitor attractions, long-term tourism, conference tourism, EFL language schools, sports tourism, diving tourism, and travel operators, as well as a tentative reserve fund for events and festivals, which is dependent on discussions with the health authorities.
Brand partnerships will be launched with Tripadvisor, Expedia, Trivalgo and Lastminute and the Malta Tourism Authority will embark on a marketing campaign in target markets, with a special focus on the UK.
Bartolo also said the MTA will seek to maximise a partnership with Manchester United it had launched in 2019.
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