Malta will pay you to go on holiday this summer

Apr 12, 2021

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After planning to lift most travel restrictions related to COVID-19 by 1 June, Malta is now looking at ways to revive its tourism industry.

In light of doing that, Malta plans to offer incoming tourists a handout of up to 200 euro (about £173) when they book a local hotel through the hotel website for a minimum of two nights, Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo announced last week.

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The total compensation offered to a traveller is determined by the hotel’s ranking. Where a five-star property will get you the full 200 euro, a four-star hotel will get you 150 euro and a three-star hotel will get you 100 euro. The compensation can be upped an extra 10% by booking a hotel on the Maltese island of Gozo, just north of the main island, according to Reuters.

With the British government looking at ways to open up travel from 17 May onwards, Malta could be a great opportunity for a weekend away.

Malta has announced that U.K. travellers who have had both doses of a vaccine are welcome from 1 June, with their vaccination card as proof. Furthermore, we deem Malta one of the contenders to be on the U.K.’s green list within the new travel light system, providing the last link to an open travel option between the U.K. and Malta for vaccinated tourists.

Related: Britons can start thinking about summer holidays abroad as Global Travel Taskforce outlines UK return to travel

Do note, however, that even if Malta is categorised as a lowest-risk green country, travellers returning from Malta to England will still need to take two tests. The first test, which can be a lateral flow test, must be taken prior to departure. The second test will need to be taken within two days of arrival and must be a PCR test.

There was never a better reason to splurge at Malta’s recently renovated InterContinental Hotel (Photo courtesy of the hotel)

When looking at vaccination levels, Malta is one of the safest EU countries to plan travel to. It’s already given at least one dose of a vaccine to 42% of adults as of last week. Given the successful vaccination programme, Malta ranks as one of the highest in the EU in terms of overall vaccination levels. The positivity rate, reflecting the number of tests returning a positive result, has fallen to a low 2.6%.

Related: What does the ‘traffic light’ travel announcement mean for my summer holiday?

Malta has been steadily relying on tourism as an important source of income, directly and indirectly accounting for more than 27% of the Maltese economy. In 2020, visitor numbers fell by more than 80%. Malta’s Tourism Authority is aiming to benefit some 35,000 travellers with this scheme.

Featured photo by Barry Winiker/Getty Images

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