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Travel & Leisure

Pacific islands await 'travel bubble' as French Polynesia reopens solo

Economic pressure prompts bold gamble in face of coronavirus risks

APIA, Samoa -- Pacific island states are pushing hard to restart quarantine-free travel and boost their battered economies, as cautious optimism about controlling COVID-19 spreads through the region.

Countries across Asia and worldwide are hammering out a combination of bilateral and multilateral arrangements to get passengers flying again. But the stakes are especially high for tiny islands that depend on tourism for 20% to 90% of their economies. With the Southern Hemisphere's peak season approaching, furious lobbying and policy experimentation are in full force.

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