In a bizarre move, The Rarotongan Resort General Manager Tata Crocombe has deemed all unvaccinated persons to be unclean and banned them from his various premises!

You might think that, for a small island nation that relies almost exclusively on tourism for their livelihood, banning a large chunk of your target audience might be a bit of a silly thing to do, but nope, this vaxhole thinks he knows best, profits be damned.

In a Cook Island News article on September 1st, Crocombe’s new internal policy was laid out, including his open disdain for his unvaccinated clients. In it he states:

If you come to the property totally drunk, we don’t have to allow you into the property and if you’re inappropriately dressed we also don’t have to allow you in, so I don’t see there’s any difference to that and people being vaccinated… It’s their right to not get vaccinated and it’s our right to not participate in the risk of their decision.

Cook Island News, 1 Sept.
Unvaccinated guests now unwelcome at Rarotongan - Cook Islands News
Is this Rarotonga’s biggest vaxhole? Tata Crocombe, GM The Rarotongan. Photo credit: Cook Island News. The BFD.

For the proof of vaccination, Crocombe said vaccination appointment cards would be accepted but said he encouraged people to get the full verified certificate and card. So it should be easy enough to get around this by presenting a fake vaccination card but really, why would you bother going there?

Not only will unvaccinated persons not be welcome to stay at The Rarotongan and their sister resorts Sanctuary Rarotonga and Aitutaki Lagoon Private Island Resort, but you won’t even be allowed to eat in their restaurants or use their facilities. Even if you have been jabbed with one of the various supposedly therapeutic toxins, you will still have to wear a mask while in their public areas which kind of defeats the purpose of heading somewhere for a relaxing holiday in the sun.

How does a snorkel mask work? Marco explains! | Lucas Divestore
All guests of The Rarotongan will be required to wear full face masks and snorkels while eating, possibly. The BFD.

Personally, I had a week booked at The Rarotongan last year which of course was postponed after we all didn’t die from the WuPox. I could have done an insurance claim to get a refund but thought I would give it a second go and booked for this November, adding in a two-day side trip to the Aitutaki Lagoon Private Island Resort for good measure. I figured it would all be killed off again by Saint Jacinda of the Pestilence but hey, support the small nation and all that.

Now that trip is a goner too. I certainly hadn’t been looking forward to a four-hour flight wearing a face nappy but figured I would just try my exemption card anyway, but now? Nope, Rarotonga is gone from my list of preferred holiday spots. Having read a few of the 1-star reviews on the various websites for The Rarotongan, I’m actually kind of glad.

Keep your expectations very low and you might just walk away with your sanity. Customer service doesn’t exist at this place, in fact we get the vibe the staff would rather we didn’t come at all. Photos are deceptive, restaurant resembles more of a food hall and the menu only ever seems to have 50% of the items available. On the upside we only have 2 nights left…

Trip Advisor review. ‘Catfish Resort’, Aug ’21.

Crocombe said he hoped the Cook Islands would make vaccination compulsory for all New Zealanders entering the country when the bubble re-opened.

Cook Island News, 1 Sept.

He also wanted travelers to provide a negative Covid-19 test 72 hours before arrival and provide another negative test after they had arrived.

Cook Island News, 1 Sept.

“Obviously it’s an inconvenience for guests but there’s a risk for the Cook Islands and the economy.

Cook Island News, 1 Sept.

Oh trust me Mr Crocombe, there will be a risk for the Cook Islands economy alright. You have lost my business and, I’m sure, that of many others. It will remain to be seen whether going woke will cause you to go broke or whether you might get an influx of other Kiwi Vaxholes who might deliberately head to your little fiefdom for a Vaxhole convention, safe in the knowledge that they will be free from those hideous ‘Unclean’ anti-vaxxers (or at least those that haven’t printed off a fake vaccination certificate).

Weirdly, I have not been advised of this major change in policy through my travel agent but I guess they will be pretty busy cancelling plans all over the place. Also, I find it a bit weird that The Rarotongan makes no mention of this new policy on their website, even on their ‘What we’re doing about Covid’ page. They are still taking bookings with no indication that they may not actually accept the people when they arrive.

At least the hotel has stated they will be giving full refunds this time, something they refused to do with the first Covid cancellations. Yes please Mr Crocombe, there is about $3,500 that needs to go back on my card immediately thanks!

So it looks like this sort of garbage might become the norm now. Other resorts on the island have said they won’t be following The Rarotongan’s lead, but I for one simply won’t be planning any overseas trips for quite some time, certainly not to Raro.

Let us know in the comments if you are planning any holidays either abroad or locally. Maybe we need to set up a series of regular posts on great places to go? What do you think?

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ExPFC, ex lots of things. I'm a passionate user of fossil fuels, a proud flag flying Kiwi, I have trouble suffering fools and the permanently offended. Sometimes I may play the devil's advocate, sometimes...