Tourism Minister says protocol for opening sector almost completed
KINGSTON, Jamaica, May 11, CMC – The Jamaica government says the protocol that will facilitate the re-opening of the tourism industry in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is almost complete and will be rolled out shortly.
“It entails a whole range of responses that the workers of the industry will have to make and also quite a bit of infrastructure adjustment that the hotels will have to make, as well as the transportation subsector,” Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett said.
“It will also involve some changes at the airports and the seaports. So, it’s a pretty comprehensive set of protocols covering all points of entry, as well as the experience of the visitor within the destination,” Bartlett said.
Bartlett said that the changes will involve issues surrounding social distancing and temperature testing, adding that other focus areas include “certification requirements for guests coming in at the airports… the use of beaches, swimming pools and things like that.
“In other words, the whole business of density management is going to be a big thing and that is also tied up in social distancing,” Bartlett noted, adding that the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo), as well as other stakeholders within the industry, is leading the development of the protocols.
“TPDCo will be responsible, primarily, because that element of it is coming under what we call destination assurance,” he added.
Last December, Bartlett said that the Jamaica was poised to generate US$3.7 billion in tourism earnings for 2019.