Vanuatu tourism prepares for border reopening through 'Safe Business Operations'

The Department of Tourism, through its Safe Business Operations Programme (SBO), is assisting Vanuatu’s tourism operators prepare for the reopening of international borders in March 2022.

The department and Vanuatu Institute of Technology (VIT) have delivered SBO training workshops to over 500 participants from more than 137 tourism businesses in SHEFA.

Further sessions have been planned according to demand.

In the other provinces, Vanuatu Skills Partnership has trained 271 staff from 145 tourism operators.

Safe Business Operations Coordinator Rae Ernst said it is pleasing to see so many businesses engaging in the programme; however, she would like operators to continue preparing and reach out for support if needed.

“The Safe Business Operations programme is different for tourism operators. With the assistance of the Safe Business Coalition, we have developed Safe Business Operations Guidelines and a new Clean Caring and Checked certification specifically for the tourism industry.”

“We know that these businesses will be on the frontline of accommodating and providing experiences for international tourists and will consequently be operating with increased risk, “Ernst said.

“Owners and managers will need to ensure a high level of hygiene and safety so that staff and customers are safe”.

The training of tourism businesses falls under pillar 3 of the Vanuatu Tourism Crisis Response and Recovery Plan (VTCRRP).

VTO said, “It is key to use this time to not only get prepared for when the borders open in terms of health and safety and business readiness, but also for awareness and communication.

The training is part of a national collaborative effort to focus on the recovery of the tourism industry and also to build a stronger, more diversified, and more resilient future for everyone that benefits from the tourism industry, both directly and indirectly.


Photo file supplied Caption: Participants of a SBO training held in Port Vila


Tensly Sumbe