Tahiti, an island in French Polynesia, will open its borders to tourists on May 1.
Edouard Fritch, the president of French Polynesia, decided to open Tahiti’s borders after meeting with French president Emmanuel Macron and other members of the French government. The reason, he said, is a combination of low COVID-19 cases locally and increased vaccination efforts.
Ahead of this anticipated reopening, Tahiti will implement new entry protocols at borders—such as virological testing, serological testing, vaccine and ETIS (Electronic Travel Information System).
“We will explain this protocol in detail with the High Commissioner in the coming days,” Fritch said (via Travelweek).
Tahiti’s plans to reopen coincide with the country’s receipt of the World Travel & Tourism Council’s Safe Travels stamp, which is the first global health and safety label for travel and tourism in the world.
In other words, the island has been deemed a safe destination for tourists by an international authority.
“[The stamp is an] additional asset for the destination, which has distinguished itself with its avant-garde health protocol,” Jean-Marc Mocellin, CEO of Tahiti Tourisme, said.
“This recognition of our efforts by a global organization reassures our partners and visitors,” added Nicole Bouteau, French Polynesia’s Minister of Tourism.
Tahiti, for those unaware, is the largest of the French Polynesian Islands, which are located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It’s known for its stunning beaches, towering mountains, and rich culture. The island was also among the primary inspirations of renowned French painter Paul Gauguin.
Tahiti is home to just shy of 200,000 people, making it the most populous island in French Polynesia. The majority of the island’s population live in Papeete, the French Polynesian capital, which is known for its natural beauty, charming markets, and French architecture.