The very word pandemic means that its something that affects the whole world, which clearly it has, but through the midst of the darkness there are actually 12 countries that are free of COVID-19.
Unsurprisingly 10 of these countries are in the Pacific, a region famously the Least Visited on earth and also notorious for taking viruses seriously. At the end of last year most Pacific Island nations would not let you in unless you had a measles vaccine for example.
How did these countries avoid COVID-19?
After North Korea the first countries to seal their borders were the Marshall Islands, Tongo, Kiribati, Palau, Micronesia, Tuvalu, Nauru, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands.
Thus with the cloud of the 2019 Samoan measles outbreak the islands realized two things, one they could not cope if there was some kind of outbreak, and two that as none of them relied on tourism in any way shape or form that closing the borders really would not hurt that much.
Nauru for example is the least visited country on earth, thus losing 100 tourists per year really was not that big a deal. So whilst it is affecting the countries, as with all places, the Pacific Islands are still likely to be some of the last places on the planet to open,vaccine, or not.
Which other countries don’t have coronavirus?
Aside from the nations of the Pacific there are only two other countries that have officially at lest not reported any indigenous cases of COVID-19, and they are Turkmenistan and North Korea.
Turkmenistan is famously quite an erratic place with one might say an “interesting” government, but officially at least they are corona free, although not at this time open to tourism.
North Korea is another case entirely, with people such as NK News having a DPRK Covid tracker, which remains at zero, and various agencies reporting there “might” be cases. As things stand though the only case reported in country was that of a re-defector crossing from south to North, which was not only a bit of a scandal, but also meant that the UNESCO city of Kaesong ended up on lockdown.
So why does all this mean for travel?
Sadly it means cock all, the world is closed, and the world will remain closed, probably until theres a vaccine. Enjoy the internet kids!