The Dominican Republic registers a significant control of Covid-19, which is manifested in a recovery of 80% in the arrival of non-resident foreigners between June and July, with respect to the same months of 2020.
As regards hotel reservations for November and December, the beginning of the high season, already exceed those of the same period of the 2018 and 2019 exercises before the pandemic.
Statistics compiled by the Dominican Ministry of Tourism indicate that 462,536 visitors arrived in the country last June, 20% more than in May, and in July they reached 572,000, an increase of 24% over the previous month.
At this rate, it is projected that by 2021 tourists will total around 4.5 million, which would be equivalent to 70% of those recorded in 2019, the full year before the pandemic.
This level of recovery, which exceeds all expectations until recently, has been made possible by the effective health care and vaccination policy implemented by the government of President Luis Abinader, which began in the midst of the pandemic on August 16, 2020.
The same has privileged the productive sectors, especially tourism, one of the pillars of the national economy, which represents 14% of the gross domestic product, and generates about 500,000 direct and indirect jobs, with more than 100,000 hotel rooms.
So far this year, 75% of visitors come from the United States and 47% of the June-July total arrived through the Punta Cana airport, which received more than 4,000 flights.
A new 340-room hotel in Punta Cana, with an investment of US$20 million, was recently opened in July. In the whole country, the number of hotel rooms exceeds 100,000.
In this way, the country has been opened to visitors who have at least two weeks of complete vaccination, or who present a certificate of a negative PCR test or antigen test, 72 hours before entry.
Effective health policy
With nearly 60% of the population with double vaccination, the Dominican Republic is among the 5 countries of the continent that have made the most progress in the control of the coronavirus, having immunized the entire population of the province of La Altagracia, where the largest tourist resort, Punta Cana-Bavaro, is located, as well as all hotel employees nationwide, carriers and suppliers of other services to visitors.
It also established a free health insurance against Covid-19 for all tourists, which very few have had to use due to the very low incidence of the virus among them.
At the national level, the control of the pandemic also shows encouraging figures. Since last August 9, the authorities ordered the end of the curfew in the National District, where the capital city of Santo Domingo is located, and in the tourist province of La Altagracia.
For the rest of the country, the restriction of circulation is maintained between 11:00 pm and 5:00 am.
It should be noted that the progress of the last four weeks is extraordinary, with a reduction of the positivity of the virus to 7.78%, the lowest since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, with a lethality of 1.15%.