New government guidance on re-opening tourism

 

The Government has outlined the measures that will allow UK tourism and visitor attractions to reopen to the public.

The guidance, published today by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, outlines the processes and facilities that businesses must put in place before reopening on July 4 so that both staff and visitors can be kept safe.

The advice includes guidelines for hotels and accommodation providers – such as campsites, caravan parks and short term lets – as well as indoor and outdoor visitor attractions and conference and events centres. Providing the conditions of the guidance are met, the wider sector is currently expected to open from 4 July 2020. 

The guidance makes clear that the following measures should be put in place:

  • Hotels and accommodation providers will introduce deep cleaning regimes between guests.
  • Meal services including breakfasts will be pre-booked and timed.
  • Timed tickets will be introduced for exhibitions, theme parks, galleries and attractions to reduce the number of visitors in locations at the same time.
  • One way systems, clear floor markings and a queue management system should be in place to maintain social distancing measures at all attractions and help to limit contact between both staff and visitors.
  • Organisations will also encourage cashless payments throughout to avoid cross contamination.
  • In addition, visitor attractions will be instructed to introduce regular deep cleaning regimes across their site and some interactive displays will be temporarily closed.

A new industry standard will also be introduced by VisitEngland for hotels, accommodation providers and visitor attractions to reassure the public that businesses are adhering to government guidance. This will act as a marker to visitors that a venue is practising social distancing, maintaining cleaning routines and has undertaken a thorough risk assessment to protect customers when on site.

Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said:

Britain needs a break, and from July 4th people can now take a well deserved staycation. We’ll need the public to keep safe on holiday by following the advice we’re providing, but there is no doubt this is the news many have been waiting for.  I am looking forward to a British holiday myself.

Our guidance will help the tourism businesses reopen safely, reassure locals and allow businesses to welcome guests back with confidence.

Guidance for those working in hotels and attractions is here.

 

Peggy_Marco / Pixabay

Hotels:

Fuller considerations for hotel operators are set out by UKHospitality, but particular consideration should be given to:

  1. Taking measures to make reception areas safer, with increased cleaning, keeping the activity time as short as possible and considering the addition of screens between guests and staff.
  2. Considering minimising lift usage from reception, and providing clear signage for new lift rules
  3. Where offering room service, taking measures such as dropping butler’s trays outside door, and encouraging tips to be added to the bill
  4. Ensuring that housekeeping staff follow government handwashing guidelines, and making a checklist of all hand contact services to be cleaned when each guests vacates.
  5. Encouraging guests to wear masks on communal corridors
  6. Checking the latest government guidance on opening of additional guest facilities (e.g. swimming pools, saunas).
  7. Ensuring that any bar or dining area is only opened in a way compliant with UK government guidance on the hospitality sector.

Bed & Breakfasts:

Fuller considerations for Bed and Breakfast owners can be found via UKHospitality, but particular consideration should be given to:

  1. Taking measures to make reception areas safer, with increased cleaning, keeping the activity time as short as possible and considering the addition of screens between guests and staff.
  2. Where offering room service (e.g. breakfast in room), taking measures such as dropping butler’s trays outside door, and encouraging tips to be added to the bill.
  3. Ensuring that housekeeping staff follow government handwashing guidelines, and making a checklist of all hand contact services to be cleaned when each guests vacates.
  4. Encouraging guests to wear masks on communal corridors.
  5. Cleaning keys between guests.
  6. Introducing enhanced cleaning of all facilities regularly during the day and at the end of the day, with particular regard to any shared facilities, considering the increased risk these entail – as set out in Section 5.3.
  7. Either shutting shared shower facilities or assigning them to one household group, (i.e. making them private), or running a reservation-and-clean process (whereby one household can exclusively book the shared facilities for a fixed time, and the facilities are cleaned thoroughly between reservations).

Not currently allowed / Pixabay

Self catering accommodation

This includes holiday apartments, homes, cottages, bungalows, boats including holiday hire, and serviced accommodation.

Fuller considerations for self catering accommodation providers are set by UKHospitality, but particular consideration should be given to:

  1. Taking measures to ensure the handover of keys to property can be done in a socially distanced way, ensuring that keys are cleaned.
  2. Ensuring that staff cleaning accommodation between stays follow full government handwashing guidelines, and make a comprehensive checklist of all hand contact services to be cleaned throughout the property when each guest vacates.

Operators of boats should:

  1. Apply appropriate social distancing measures, including during boat hand over.
  2. Clean boats between users.
  3. Set up and follow cleaning and waste removal routines after each hire for all handrails, indoor surfaces, and toilets or bathrooms.

 Caravan parks and campsites

Fuller considerations for caravan parks and campsites are set out by UKHospitality, but particular consideration should be given to ensuring that such sites operate within the current government guidance on social mixing outside of household groups by:

  1. Taking measures to make any reception or office areas safer, with increased cleaning, keeping the activity time as short as possible and considering the addition of screens between guests and staff.
  2. Closing indoor shared facilities, including:

    – communal kitchens, where guests prepare their own food
    – other indoor communal areas where social distancing can’t be managed within current government guidelines

  3. Taking all possible steps to reduce the risk of transmission in shared shower, changing, and toilet facilities including:

    – Where possible assigning one group of washing and showering facilities to one household group
    – Where showers and toilets are shared, setting clear use and cleaning guidance to ensure they are kept clean and clear of personal items and that social distancing is achieved as much as possible.

  4. Introducing enhanced cleaning of all facilities regularly during the day and at the end of the day with particular regard to any shared facilities, considering the increased risk these entail – as set out in Section 5.3.
  5. Considering introducing a system of staggered entry and booked timeslots for using shower facilities.
  6. Making information available to guests on the increased risk of using these facilities.
  7. Where possible increasing safe ventilation.
  8. Ensuring that any bar or dining area is only opened in a way compliant with UK government guidance on the hospitality sector.
  9. Ensuring that indoor children’s play areas are closed, in line with wider Government guidance.
  10. Ensuring that shared facilities like water points, waste points or washing up points are cleaned regularly.

 

There is a whole raft more on the Government website.

 

 

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