Photo by Handout via Getty Images
The loosening of CDC restrictions combined with a declining vaccination rate is not exactly the recipe for a Hot Vaxx Summer, or whatever “the kids” (30-year-old Twitter users) are calling it these days. Although vaccine hesitancy isn’t the same thing as full-on anti-vaxx sentiment, it’s still clear that some people are going to need a little more than the prospect of not accidentally killing someone to entice them into inoculation.
But the United States is all about gamification and absurd, cheesy motivators for chore-like tasks, such as buying a car or opening a bank account. That’s where vaccine incentives come into play: little rewards only accessible to people who get the COVID-19 vaccine. Some vaccine incentives, like free Krispy Kreme donuts for the rest of the year, free Shake Shack fries for New Yorkers, cold hard cash, and the opportunity to cosplay as Ricky Bobby for Floridians, are already on the table regionally, which is great! So great, in fact, that VICE came up with a few more incentives that could sweeten the vaccine pot to the point that anyone who’s anyone drops what they’re doing and signs up for the jab. (Of course, this doesn’t prevent existing issues with vaccine accessibility, but… that’s a problem for another blog.) Below are a few suggestions that are free for any municipal, state, or federal government to implement at will. In fact, if anybody knows Dr. Fauci’s email address, it would be great to get these in front of him.
We could do a lot to make vaccination sites fun—alleviate the unemployment crisis by hiring a few sign spinners, set up step-and-repeats at every vaccination site for a little red-carpet post-vaxx moment, give out city-specific, limited edition merch—the kind that’s unbearably corny to buy but instantly iconic to receive for free. (Not to mention the fact that it’ll be worth its weight in Bitcoin as a collector’s item in the future—my God!) Pop a free “Fauci Ouchie” YETI thermos in the hands of everyone on their way out of the door—I can guarantee that people will do anything for free swag.
Pop a car dealership dancing tube man out front
Are you kidding me? These things are so popular and so expensive. I’d get vaccinated again for one of these!
‘30 percent off’ coupon for a KitchenAid stand mixer
If enough people in the U.S. are vaccinated by January 2022, MoviePass comes back and nobody asks any questions about how it can possibly be profitable
Sorry, but Shake Shack’s fries aren’t the alpha fast food frise’d potato—not even close. That crown belongs to a company that honestly owes the U.S. a big “Thank you!” for the disproportionate amount of love and fealty it commands for a fast food chain that closes one day a week because of God. Open your deep fryer, Mr. fil-A.
Free Chick-fil-A fries for the rest of 2021
Oh, sorry, you’re not interested in helping alleviate a global public health crisis? What about the prospect of meeting Taylor Swift, Rihanna, or Lady Gaga in the process? We envision this as a big get for stans who want to “inject” their fave’s content “into their veins.” The signs have been there for years! Dolly Parton put this shit on her back—“Imagine” if literally any other celebrity stepped up to the plate.
Train celebrities to administer the vaccine
We still have time to turn it around, people! This is what community looks like!
If enough people in the U.S. are vaccinated by January 2022, retailers agree to halt all production of low-rise jeans
C’mon. We know who would like this, especially if everyone who got the jab here got a one-day FastPass+—redeemable for the rest of 2021—in the process. Will get vaxxed for the chance to skip the line at Space Mountain! (In this scenario, some of the characters are administering the vaccines, too—but probably just the princesses. It would be hard to hold the needle in a Mickey Mouse costume.)
Turn Disney World into a vaccination site
No need to make another email address!
Free Sephora VIB status and/or streaming service free trial amnesty for anyone who gets vaccinated
Money laundering, vandalism, loitering, possession… Let’s just let it slide this one time for everyone who can display a valid vaccination card when they’re caught red-handed. It’s like The Purge, but actually not like The Purge at all, because mass vaccination helps other people instead of hurting them!
Vaccinated people get to do one non-violent crime in 2021 with no consequences
This one just makes sense, especially when it comes to the kind of international travel that is absolutely going to require COVID-19 vaccination anyway. Follow Katie Way on Twitter.