Coronavirus: Tourism Industry Update

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30 April 2021


Coronavirus: Tourism Industry Update

Please follow the news reports and for latest advice regularly visit the Public Health Wales website and the Business Wales website

BULLETIN CONTENTS - Coronavirus restrictions relaxations confirmed; Volunteers and those unable to work from home can order a lateral flow self-test kit online; Group/Coach Visits & Guided Tours; Culture and heritage destinations and venues: guidance for a phased return; Accepting bookings from extended households; COVID-19 checklists for tourism and hospitality businesses; Health and Safety Executive (HSE): Key points to consider for businesses reopening in Wales; 6,000 businesses in Wales are now “Good to Go”; Inclusive & Accessible Guidelines to aid global Travel & Tourism recovery; Skills and Training: Personal Learning Account / Jobcentre Plus; Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS); HMRC Employer Bulletin April 2021; Useful COVID-19 information.

Coronavirus restrictions relaxations confirmed

The Welsh Government has confirmed changes to the coronavirus restrictions in Wales from Monday 3 May.

On the 23 April, the First Minister announced potential further easing of the rules if the public health condition continued to improve.

From Monday 3 May:

  • Gyms, fitness facilities, leisure centres, spas and swimming pools can reopen
  • Extended households will be possible, allowing 2 households to come together to form an exclusive bubble who can meet and have contact indoors
  • Organised children’s indoor activities can recommence, such as sporting, cultural and wider recreational groups and clubs. Children’s birthday parties, or wider gatherings of families and friends in private homes are still not allowed
  • Organised indoor activities for adults can also recommence for up to 15 people, including, exercise classes and swimming lessons
  • Community centres can reopen.

This means Wales will have completed the move to Alert Level 3 by 3 May.

The next review of the coronavirus restrictions is due by 13 May.  Read in full on Gov.Wales.

Volunteers and those unable to work from home can order a lateral flow self-test kit online

From Monday 26 of April volunteers and those who are unable to work from home can order a lateral flow self-test kit to be delivered direct to their home. People can order a test online: Get rapid lateral flow COVID-19 tests if you do not have symptoms.

Read the announcement in full on Gov.Wales

Group/Coach visits & guided tours

Within the respective Wales regulations and guidance, day visits to outdoor attractions and retail are now possible, and multi-day coach/group trips will be able to go ahead once serviced accommodation, indoor hospitality and indoor attractions re-open (signalled for 17 May onwards).   The Guidance for Tourism and Hospitality businesses has been updated and includes information for:

Operators of road, rail, tramway and water passenger services (e.g. coach, bus and tour operators, heritage railway and boat trips)  - These are defined as Public Transport Services under the Coronavirus Regulations - the Welsh Government has issued Guidance on public transport (updated as of 12 April), and operators must have regard to it.

All tourism and hospitality businesses should refer to section 7 of the Guidance for Tourism and Hospitality businesses (specifically group visits and organised activities) in respect of limits on the numbers of people that can gather in respective environments (including considerations around household mixing and organised activities).

Culture and heritage destinations and venues: guidance for a phased return

Guidance for organisations and individuals in Wales who manage culture and heritage destinations and venues that are open to the public is available on Gov.Wales.

Accepting bookings from extended households

From 3 May, holiday accommodation operators in Wales can accept bookings for stays in self-contained accommodation from those who have formed an extended household ("bubble") in accordance with the Welsh coronavirus Regulations.

Customers from outside Wales wishing to book holidays must also comply with the law as it applies to Wales, as well as any restrictions on travelling that apply in the country they come from.

Tourism and hospitality businesses in Wales must also take all reasonable measures to minimise the risk of exposure to the virus and should not knowingly accept customers in breach of the restrictions.

COVID-19 checklists for tourism and hospitality businesses

Updated checklists are available to support the Guidance for Tourism and Hospitality businesses. These checklists outline the key measures for Social Distancing, Hygiene and Keeping Records you should implement to keep your staff, customers and visitors safe. 

Business Action Card is also available and this provides you with information on how to keep COVID-19 out of your premises, what action to take when an employee or customer tests positive and how can you minimise the spread of COVID-19 in your business. This has also been shared as guidance to enforcement officers with Environmental Health teams and Incident Management Teams at Local Authorities for use as they visit hospitality businesses.

Additional Keep Wales Safe assets for use on social media are also available.

Health and Safety Executive (HSE): Key points to consider for businesses reopening in Wales

As lockdown measures ease in Wales, businesses need to remain vigilant and make sure their COVID-secure measures, as well as other health and safety measures, are in place to protect workers, visitors and others.

Being COVID-secure means being adaptable to the current guidance and having measures in place to manage the risk of coronavirus.  You can find more details on the Business Wales website.

6,000 businesses in Wales are now “Good to Go”

The “We’re Good To Go”  industry standard mark is a free self-assessment scheme that has been designed in partnership with the national organisations (Visit Wales, Tourism Northern Ireland, VisitScotland and VisitEngland) to provide reassurance for all sectors of the tourism industry, as well as reassurance to visitors, that businesses have clear processes in place and are following industry and Government COVID-19 guidance on cleanliness and social distancing.

This mark is now also recognised by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) as a means of customer reassurance in an international context, as it meets WTTC’s international global standardised health and hygiene protocols.

Businesses who have read and implemented the Welsh Government Coronavirus Tourism and Hospitality reopening guidance, understand the guidance from Public Health Wales and have a COVID-19 Risk Assessment in place can apply for the industry standard mark.

If you haven’t signed up yet, please do – it’s a simple process and it will mean that your business can use the mark to give confidence to consumers. The scheme is being used across the UK and prospective visitors will increasingly be on the lookout for venues and services taking part, when planning their trip.  

It will continue to be a core part of Visit Wales messaging to consumers and users on can search all products via the “Good to Go” filter option.

Inclusive & accessible guidelines to aid global travel & tourism recovery

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has launched its new high-level guidelines for inclusion and accessibility in the sector which focus on the experience of travellers with disabilities and will help make the travel & tourism sector a more inclusive space.  These innovative and important guidelines were compiled on the basis of insights and frameworks developed by private sector leaders in travel & tourism, travel and disability experts, and research from intergovernmental organisations.  For more information visit the WTTC website.

Skills and Training:

  • Personal Learning Account  -  Help your existing staff gain the qualifications and skills your businesses needs through a free, flexible college course.  Personal Learning Account are delivered by colleges across Wales who will be happy to discuss your specific training needs.  Find out more and register your interest via the Skills Gateway.
  • Jobcentre Plus - Jobcentre Plus can offer businesses help and support with recruiting people – visit the Gov.UK website to find out how they can help you.  

For up-to-date information on other skills, recruitment and training support for your business, as well as other support such as Wellbeing for employers and employees, visit our Skills pages.

Coronavirus job retention scheme (CJRS)

If you have employees who have previously been ineligible for the CJRS, as they were not on your payroll on 30 October 2020, they may be eligible for periods from 1 May 2021 onwards.

Visit the Business Wales website for more details.

HMRC employer bulletin April 2021

HMRC publishes the Employer Bulletin 6 times a year, giving employers and agents the latest information on topics and issues that may affect them.  Visit the Business Wales website for more details.

Useful COVID-19 information

As each premises is different, businesses should read all guidance. This continues to be updated so please check back regularly for the latest information.

Stay up to date with tourism industry news

We are committed to providing the support and assurance the business community needs during these unprecedented difficult times and have issued several Coronavirus (COVID-19) related bulletins which can be found on the Tourism Industry Coronavirus (COVID-19) Bulletins page. 

Business Wales is providing businesses with tailored support and advice about dealing with coronavirus, from financial and supply chain planning to advice on staffing issues. We would advise Tourism businesses and stakeholders in Wales wanting specific guidance to visit the Business Wales website or call Business Wales helpline on 03000 6 03000, and to regularly visit the Public Health Wales website for up-to-date public health information for you, your staff and your visitors.