The Dominican Republic’s president is encouraging the country’s hotels to re-open on October 1, but the president of the nation’s hotel association said only eight percent of Dominican hotels are currently operating, and even if all properties reopen, many will be unable to survive if international vacationers do not return.
In a press briefing Friday, Luis Abinader, the Dominican president, called on the country’s hotels and resorts to reopen by October 1 to begin “the [recovery] of the Dominican economy.”
Earlier this month Abinader and tourism minister David Collado announced a Responsible Tourism Recovery Plan, to begin September 15, which eliminates the requirement that travelers present a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival at Dominican airports.
However in a Dominican Today report, Paola Rainieri, president of the National Association of Hotels and Tourism of the Dominican Republic (Asonahores), said while the country’s hoteliers hope travelers return to the country during its “high season” of November through March, many properties “do not plan to open this year.”
“If the tourists do not arrive there are no rooms,” said Rainieri, who added that many potential travelers have already paid for vacations but may be able to change their destinations to countries currently open to visitors. “We have to make sure they can come to the Dominican Republic,” she said.