While Bali is to Australia what Cancún is to America, Fiji is to Australia what Hawaii is to America.
Marketed as the happiest place in the world, Fiji is not where digital nomads, CrossFit crazies and Schoolies go to party, but is more known as a chilled out, blissful getaway where paperbacks, families, honeymooners and swim up cocktail bars abound.
It’s also a place many of us have forgotten about in recent years, as we’ve had a big old travel ban plastered across our minds, resulting in such ludicrous events as Bendalong being compared to the Maldives and frigid Ocean Road beaches being compared to Poligano a Mare.
It looks like there is some light at the end of this rather long tunnel, however, with Fiji planning to open to international tourists in November and with the Australian government suggesting we might be able to go there by December.
Savasi Island Resort, where lush green meets the big blue. 🍃🌊
We’re planning to reopen at the end of the year so start planning your stay in Savusavu here: https://t.co/p3s13Mzu2Z
— TourismFiji (@TourismFiji) September 9, 2021
This opportunity, like many in this current environment, hinges on you being fully vaccinated, and the government living up to its vague promises.
Australian authorities expect us to hit our target of having at least 80 per cent of our eligible population vaccinated in November.
Fiji, for its part, has been recording “less than 200 daily [covid] cases on average for the past week and has been rapidly rolling out its vaccination program,” 9News reports.
“According to Fijian Government statistics, 97.1 per cent of the country’s target population have received at least one dose and 58.2 per cent are fully vaccinated,” (9News).
It’s also interesting to note, as the ABC reports, “Tourism Fiji has said only tourists from countries that allow quarantine-free travel will be allowed to visit.”
As for getting there, Qantas has said international flights to countries with high vaccination rates and relatively low COVID-19 risks like Singapore, the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, Fiji, New Zealand and Canada could resume from the middle of December, provided we hit our 80% vaccinated goal.
This still depends on the Federal Government opening our borders.
Flights to riskier destinations with lower levels of vaccination (think: Bali, Phuket, Bangkok, Manila, Ho Chi Minh City and Johannesburg) are reported to be planned to resume in April.
Qantas chief executive officer Alan Joyce has reportedly said: “The prospect of flying overseas might feel a long way off, especially with New South Wales and Victoria in lockdown, but the current pace of the vaccine rollout means we should have a lot more freedom in a few months’ time.”
“It’s obviously up to government exactly how and when our international borders re-open, but with Australia on track to meet the 80 per cent trigger agreed by national cabinet by the end of the year, we need to plan ahead for what is a complex restart process.”
As far as first international trips post border ban go, we can’t think of too many better places than Fiji.
Interest piqued? Watch the below video, by TikTok traveller @travelwithjaro, to see four reasons why you should visit.