New York City in talks to offer free vaccines to visitors to spur tourism

Mayor Bill de Blasio said he was working with state officials to offer free vaccines to tourists

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, right,  and President and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust, Tony Malkin, attend a special 90th anniversary lighting at The Empire State Building last week in New York City. The Mayor has suggested giving free vaccines for tourists to the city. Photograph: by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, right, and President and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust, Tony Malkin, attend a special 90th anniversary lighting at The Empire State Building last week in New York City. The Mayor has suggested giving free vaccines for tourists to the city. Photograph: by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

 

New York City is in talks to offer free vaccines to tourists as a way to encourage them to visit, Mayor Bill de Blasio said.

The Mayor said he was working with state officials to offer free vaccines to visitors as a way to spur tourism.

Mobile vans will bring Johnson and Johnson one-dose shots to Times Square, Brooklyn Bridge Park and other popular locations, de Blasio said Thursday during a virus briefing.

“We think this is a positive message to send to tourists,” the mayor said. “Come here and we’re going to take care of you.”The city plans a $30 million marketing blitz to recharge its tourism industry.

Restrictions lifted

Capacity restrictions on restaurants, stores and shows will be lifted on May 19th as Covid-19 cases decrease and vaccinations increase, Governor Andrew Cuomo said this week. Broadway tickets for September shows went on sale on Thursday.

Separately, Pfizer and BioNTech have capacity to make as many as 3 billion doses of their Covid-19 vaccine this year, more than double the amount the partners had predicted less than six months ago.

The partners will further increase their capacity for 2022 to more than 3 billion doses, BioNTech said in an e-mailed statement.

The increase is the latest in a series of production target boosts and comes amid increased demand for messenger RNA Covid vaccines around the world.

- Bloomberg