Alaska to offer free Covid jabs to tourists this summer

Cathy Adams
·2-min read
<p>Alaska is moving to boost its battered tourist industry</p> (Getty Images)

Alaska is moving to boost its battered tourist industry

(Getty Images)

Alaska will offer free jabs to visitors this summer, in an effort to boost tourism to the state.

Alaskan governor Mike Dunleavy made the announcement as part of a package of measures to rescue business in the US state’s pandemic-battered tourism industry.

From 1 June, any tourist arriving at one of four Alaska airports – Anchorage, Juneau, Ketchikan and Fairbank – will be able to get a vaccine for free.

The vaccines on offer are those manufactured by Pfizer and Moderna, said Alaska’s director of public health Heidi Hedberg, and tourists will be able to get a second dose of either if they stay in the state for a further 21 or 28 days.

There will be a five-day soft rollout of the programme at Anchorage airport at the end of April.

Ms Hedberg added that the vaccine clinics will be outside security at the airports. She also stressed that there was plenty of vaccine supply to go around, for both Alaskans and international visitors.

The airport vaccine clinics are part of a package of measures to encourage tourists back to the state. Mr Dunleavy said $150m (£107m) would be spent on tourism relief.

He also urged the US CDC to rethink its ban on cruise ships. Cruising is vital to the Alaskan tourism industry, and it has been “hit hard” by the ban.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

“Alaska is a magical place, we want them to enjoy this magical place,” said the governor.

“This is a spectacular state.”

The US currently bans entry to most non-US citizens who have been in the UK and Europe recently; while international leisure travel from England is banned until at least 17 May.

“While we’re still awaiting official updates from both the UK and the US governments, there are a number of positive signs that the USA are planning to reopen their borders to UK travellers this summer, and will also be on the UK’s green list,” said Liz Lunnon, product manager for Discover The World.

“And Alaska is leading the way with all over-16s already invited for their vaccines. Alaska is the perfect destination for a post-lockdown escape, offering vast open spaces, clean air and plenty of outdoor activities – a landscape where social distancing comes naturally! Encounter the grizzly bears of Katmai, hike in the shadow of Denali or cruise past calving glaciers in the Kenai Fjords.”

Read More

Australia-New Zealand travel bubble brings relief

When will the green list be announced and who will be on it?

Which countries are on the red list and what does it mean?