(CMR) The Cayman Islands could get a large number of vaccinated tourists traveling to the Caribbean when it opens its borders as vaccinated visitors are choosing to visit countries that have strict COVID-19 protocols in place.
The Cayman Islands plan to admit vaccinated travelers from September 9 to October 13 during the third phase of its structured reopening.
The Cayman Islands is among at least seven Caribbean nations and territories that have announced mandatory vaccination policies for incoming adult travelers. The other countries are Anguilla, Grenada, St. Barts, St. Kitts and Nevis, Trinidad and Tobago, and Turks and Caicos.
CNBC reported that following the announcements, travel interest increased to all of them:
Interest in Grenada went up 25%, St. Kitts and Nevis by 26%, Cayman Islands up by 44% and Anguilla by 59%.
According to a CNBC, Marketing technology company Zeta Global analyzed site traffic to the main tourism websites of several islands after they announced vaccinated-only policies. Eric Bamberger, senior vice president of hospitality at Zeta Global said people have more interest in traveling to islands where there are vaccination protocols in place.
“People have more interest in traveling to islands where there are vaccination protocols in place. And their interest among other islands without vaccination protocols is waning,” Bamberger said.
Data from travel marketing company Adara also indicates enthusiasm for vaccinated-only entrance policies. Searches and bookings spiked when Trinidad and Tobago announced it was reopening only to immunized travelers — and then again when the policy was implemented, CNBC reported.
Adventure travel company Intrepid Travel has also seen a preference for destinations with more restrictions, Matt Berna, the company’s managing director of North America, told CNBC.
“We have found our customers to be more interested in traveling to Caribbean destinations with more strict and firm policies and travel restrictions related to Covid-19,” he said.
“Vaccinated people want to vacation in places that had stricter requirements, so they aren’t mixing with the unvaccinated,” said Adara’s chief marketing officer Carolyn Corda.
The relative strictness or leniency of entrance requirements in the Caribbean is reshaping travel trends in the region. Unvaccinated travelers are gravitating to the islands that will let them in, while the vaccinated want places that keep the unimmunized out, CNBC reported.
Also, according to CNBC, a study by the financial website FinanceBuzz published this month indicates more people would be likely to fly (48%) if airlines required vaccinations, than the amount that disfavors such a policy (27%).