Vaccination of tourism workers against COVID begins

Photo /2021_ilustrac_f/210423_nbdu.jpg

The organised vaccination of tourism workers against COVID-19 began in Dubrovnik on Friday and about 430 will be vaccinated today. Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac visited the vaccination point and said Dubrovnik was chosen to begin the vaccination of tourism workers because of its significance as a destination.

"With the 'Safe Stay in Croatia' project, we have developed all the standards. We are sending guests a message of safety so it's important that as many tourism workers as possible are vaccinated," she said.

Vaccination will be organised in other counties as well because tourism workers are a priority, she said, adding that she expected all who wanted to be vaccinated to be vaccinated before the summer.

Brnjac said 70% of tourism workers had expressed interest in being vaccinated. "We certainly expect a higher turnout because tourism workers are directly in contact with guests, and it's important that we reduce the possibility of hotspots. Besides, in choosing a destination, guests will look at the vaccination rate."

The government will ensure antigen tests for tourists for a symbolic price and it's up to us to adhere to the epidemiological measures, Brnjac said.

It's important to have testing points not just at airports and border crossings but also in marinas and elsewhere where tourists can access them easily, she added.

The minister said that in agreement with the Croatian Institute of Public Health, private renters would also be vaccinated.

Dubrovnik-Neretva County head Nikola Dobroslavić said he was pleased Dubrovnik was chosen to start the vaccination of tourism workers as "we have been the hardest hit by the coronavirus crisis."

He said that last year the Dubrovnik area recorded a tourist turnover drop of over 80% in comparison with 2019. "We still believe that we can achieve 60 to 70% of the 2019 results, although we are aware that this depends on the situation in tourist generating countries."