In the Dominican Republic, the fall in international tourism continued throughout August with a drop of 87.4% over the same month last year, as reported by the Central Bank last week. The country plans to revive tourism.
In August, only 50,068 international tourists arrived in the Caribbean country, a number that represents a 7.46% decrease compared to July, the month in which the borders were reopened after a 4-month lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.
If trips of Dominican expats are included, the tourism fall stands at 77.8%, according to the monthly report of the Central Bank.
In the first eight months of the year, trips by international tourists contracted by 67.3%, while those of Dominican expats recorded a 51.1% decrease. Last month, 67.4% of the tourists who visited Dominican beaches (a total of 33,789), were from the United States.
Tourism is the most important industry of the Dominican economy, contributing about 8% of the country’s GDP, and is also the main source of foreign exchange.
The Dominican Government announced a plan to revive tourism, which is expected to start on September 15. The plan includes free travel insurance for tourists in the case of COVID-19 infection. The insurance will cover the costs of long-term accommodation, as well as hospital expenses and flight changes. Within this plan, the mandatory PCR test before traveling to the country has been removed.
In the Dominican Republic, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases amounts to 99,898 with 1,864 total deaths, according to the most recent official statistics.
The country announced a state of emergency again on July 20, enforcing a curfew throughout the territory and, in addition, leisure activities that involve crowds, such as nightclubs or casinos, remain prohibited.