Guidelines on how hotels and wider hospitality sector will operate after Covid-19

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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justin.kelly@iconicnews.ie

Guidelines on how hotels and wider hospitality sector will operate after Covid-19

Guidelines on how hotels and wider hospitality sector will operate after Covid-19

Fáilte Ireland has published sector-specific operational guidelines for the tourism industry to ensure the safe re-opening of tourism businesses on June 29th.  

The National Tourism Development Authority developed the guidelines in collaboration with industry groups and they are in line with the Government’s Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business and the Return to Work Safely Protocol.  

The guidelines provide detailed advice on the necessary systems to be implemented in order to instil public confidence and reboot business while adhering to public health advice and Government protocols. They are the first in a suite of new supports being rolled out by Fáilte Ireland to help tourism businesses to recover and re-open safely.  

The guidelines have been issued for Hotels & Guesthouses; Self-Catering businesses; Caravan & Camping businesses; Visitor Attractions; Activity Providers; B&Bs & Historic Houses; Restaurants & Cafes.

Fáilte Ireland’s sector-specific operational guidelines will be regularly updated in line with Government public health advice as and when this advice evolves. This includes any further guidance that is given following work by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre and National Public Health Emergency Team on the application of the existing social distancing requirements in specific, defined and controlled environments in the hospitality industry during periods of low incidence of the disease. 

Paul Kelly, CEO of Fáilte Ireland, said the new guidelines are a ‘critical part in helping tourism businesses reopen safely’:  “Throughout this crisis we have been working with tourism and hospitality businesses to give them the guidance and supports they urgently need. The next phase of our response is recovery, re-opening and rebuilding the tourism  industry and renewing its vital contribution to job creation and regional development.  

"This is the greatest crisis our industry has ever faced and the reality is that many tourism businesses will not be in a position to re-open. The purpose of the operational guidelines we have developed in collaboration with industry groups is to try to help those businesses that can re-open their doors to do so safely. I would like to thank the industry groups, individual businesses, worker representation groups, relevant State agencies, Government departments and all those involved in the development of these guidelines. We will continue to focus all of our resources on providing critical operational and business supports to ensure the re-opening of as many tourism businesses as possible and to safeguard the viability of our tourism industry.”   

Jenny De Saulles, Director of Sector Development at Fáilte Ireland, added: “We have worked closely with a number of industry groups and an infection control expert to develop these operational guidelines that will equip tourism and hospitality businesses with the necessary information and advice to enable them to re-open safely while also helping to instil public confidence.  Our consumer tracker research is finding that health and safety protocols in premises and ‘safe breaks’ are emerging as strong themes as people plan their domestic holiday.” 

Speaking about the guidelines for re-opening, Tim Fenn, Chief Executive of the Irish Hotels Federation, said: “The health and safety of employees and guests will always be our main priority. Hotels have already begun to adapt their services and facilities in anticipation of reopening under COVID-19 guidelines and the publication of these standards gives them further clarity on what they must do, while providing important reassurance for guests that they can book and look forward to an enjoyable and safe staycation in an Irish hotel this year. Ireland’s hotels have a well-earned reputation globally for their high service standards and we will be applying that same commitment to the implementation of these new standards.” 

Following the development of the new guidelines for safe re-opening, Fáilte Ireland is working with tourism businesses to support them to determine the capacity of their business and the financial implications of this new operating model. A new suite of financial recovery supports, a ‘Calculating Capacity’ tool and supports around HR for re-opening are now available on the COVID-19 Business Support Hub.  

You can see the full guideline for each sector HERE.