If you are afraid to travel, South Africa has implemented a number of measures to keep you safe. Picture: Anna Shvets.
If you are afraid to travel, South Africa has implemented a number of measures to keep you safe. Picture: Anna Shvets.

4 ways you can travel safely in 2020

By Travel Reporter Time of article published Oct 11, 2020

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As travel gradually opens, more people are starting to explore.

Others may be a bit hesitant, but thanks to health and safety measures implemented by the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA), World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and World Health Organization (WHO), travellers can have peace of mind.

Here are just four ways you can travel safely in 2020:

Check that your establishment has the ‘stamp of approval’

The TBCSA has played a significant role in developing comprehensive protocols for all tourism-related facilities and establishments.

These protocols align with the latest Disaster Management and Department of Employment and Labour regulations, WHO, National Institute for Communicable Disease, and Department of Health guidelines and advice, as well as the Health & Safety Act.

TBCSA has provided establishments with the support, tools, and information required to make the health of all guests a top priority, including the ‘Opus4business’ app, which allows businesses to record and keep track of their compliance.

Their Travel Safe – Eat Safe Certification is also linked to the app and provides evidence that all social distancing, cleaning, and health screening procedures are up to par, all the while allowing for effortless management of health screenings for patrons, employees, suppliers, and more.

TBCSA protocols have received the World Travel and Tourism Council’s (WTTC) stamp of approval and the TBCSA has issuing rights for the WTTC Safe Travels stamp within South Africa.

The specially designed stamp allows travellers to recognise businesses in South Africa which have adopted world-class health and hygiene protocols for safe travel.

Follow a few simple, standard recommendations

According to Peter Dros, Sales & Marketing Director of Fancourt in George, the TBCSA’s guidelines are impressively comprehensive – but the majority of the work happens in the background, leaving guests with only a few simple steps to follow:

“Some measures are immediately obvious, like health screening on arrival, clear signage and frequent sanitising of ‘high touch points’. But protocols are in place for every step of the guest journey, and our Covid-19 protocols are just as stringent behind the scenes. From kitchen to the laundry, delivery bays to suites, we have taken every precaution to ensure a happy, healthy stay," said Dros.

A traveller's responsibility as a guest starts and ends with the WHO’s standard recommendations to prevent the spread of Covid-19, which includes the frequent cleaning of hands using an alcohol-based hand sanitiser, washing of hands with soap and warm water, covering your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing, using a cloth mask in public areas and avoiding travel and socialising if you are feeling unwell.

Listen to your hosts and respect their guidelines

Most of the travel experience will remain familiar to tourists. However, there will be a few new aspects to be aware of due to Covid-19.South Africa now has a midnight curfew in place, which means many kitchens may close slightly earlier so their staff, who may have some distance to travel, can get home before curfew kicks in.

Respecting your establishment’s guidelines goes a long way

“While Covid-positive cases are reducing and the South African recovery rate continues to improve, the country definitely isn’t out of the woods just yet. We urge all travellers to respect the various protocols, to listen intently, and to ask questions if there is anything that they do not fully understand. We all need to work together to prevent a resurgence from taking place,” said Dros.

Support smaller SMMEs and avoid the crowds

Almost all South Africans have been suffering from cabin fever, and Covid-19 and the lockdown period have had a tremendous impact on everyone’s mental health. A much-anticipated getaway could be the perfect way in which to reduce stress, unwind, and regain perspective after many long months of worries and uncertainty.

It is also a wonderful way in which South Africans can do their bit to help kick-start the economy once again.

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