The New Normal about Travel in Goa

The global outbreak of COVID-19 has brought the world to a standstill. This is an unprecedented global health emergency with tremendous impact on societies and livelihoods. Travel and Tourism is among the sectors most affected by this crisis but at the same time, Tourism can also be an integral part of the global recovery efforts.In the COVID 19 aftermath, countries will need to realise a new reality of the tourism and travel industry and make all efforts to shape the sector accordingly. Tourism Businesses will require a re-thinking of how they will operate in terms of hygiene, health and safety to ensure safety of their clients and staff.The Ministry of Tourism proposes to recommend Protocols covering all service providers and their related activities to tourism and hospitality sectors, to ensure a safe and prepared approach for a post-COVID 19 revival.

The protocols/guidelines are applicable to service providers engaged in management of both international and domestic tourists. These include, the following in the tourism supply chain,

  • Travel Agents
  • Tour Operators (Inbound, Domestic & Adventure)
  • Tourist Transport Operators
  • Tourist Facilitators / Guides

The guidelineshave been prepared with primary focus on identifying and mitigating risks forthe service provider and for ensuring necessary safety and hygiene practices in interaction with travelers.Minimizing all possible touch points by use of digital technology has been one of the guiding principles for the guidelines. This would not only help in reducing the risk but also make traceability of the guest easier in case a situation in future warrants so.The protocols would include the requirements that each sub-sector or tourist activity would need to comply with in terms of health and hygiene. The same could be adapted by States/UTs based on their tourism products and service capacity.

Tourism Service Providers who undertake bookings for different services

  • Booking and travels plans are to be accepted for tourists with no medical history of the virus in the last 28 days, especially in case of inbound travellers
  • Necessary medical proof or health declaration(Format at Annexure) may be sought for inbound travellers
  • Bookings required to be made online or via an online platform with cashless transactions only
  • Proper record and logs are to be maintained for each traveller
  • Information on age, medical history, allergies etc. are recommended to be captured for each traveller
  • Ensure that detailed itinerary is be provided to each tourist with details on vehicle, stay, layovers, activities etc.
  • Ensure guidelines based on advice from health authorities which may include the wearing of face masks, guidance on hand hygiene and social distancing provided to the tourist beforehand
  • All information to the tourists should be disseminated digitally
  • Small group tours recommended with maximum of 10 to 15 people for ease of implementing social distancing.
  • Office staff should be trained to answer questions

For us at Planet-Goa, our team is driven by that feeling of exhilaration that one gets when discovering that something ‘unique’ and ‘new’ about Goa for our ever-so-discerning readers.

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Author: Planet Goa Team
For us at Planet-Goa, our team is driven by that feeling of exhilaration that one gets when discovering that something ‘unique’ and ‘new’ about Goa for our ever-so-discerning readers.

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