Preventative measures, including providing sanitizer and requiring face masks, come as province reports 334th death from COVID-19
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government on Monday issued guidelines for the resumption of tourism in the province in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
In line with Prime Minister Imran Khan’s desire to see economic activities resume across Pakistan, the National Tourism Board has issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) for tour operators, hotels, and restaurants. It has claimed that anyone found violating the SOPs would face strict action—though similar warnings were issued to mosques, markets and public transporters to little effect.
Under the guidelines provided, all tourists must wear face masks at all times in public places, and keep hand sanitizers on their person. Similarly, drivers ferrying people to tourist spots are also required to wear masks and gloves.
Owners of hotels, and other places of accommodation for tourists, have been directed to ensure physical distancing within their premises and to ensure their staff has access to personal protective equipment in case of any outbreak. Sanitizer must be available for all travelers at the hotel reception, says the guideline.
All accommodation facilities have also been directed to provide pamphlets listing preventative measures against a COVID-19 infection. Hotels with elevators have been instructed to sanitize its buttons and doors after each trip. Meanwhile, any hotels with on-site gymnasiums or swimming pools have been ordered to keep the facilities shut until further notice.
Referring to tour operators, the guidelines require them to keep check on all necessary details of tourists, including CNIC numbers, phone numbers, and home addresses. Similar to accommodations, tour operators have also been required to provide visitors with a booklet on precautionary measures.
Prior to entry to a tourist spot, say the guidelines, the temperature of each visitor would be measured. Anyone found with an elevated body temperature would be subject to further examination by government officials, and if needed could be placed in quarantine, according to the SOPs.
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province has the highest fatality rate due to the novel coronavirus in Pakistan, reporting 334 deaths out of 6,230 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday morning—16 of which occurred in the past 24 hours. The province has recorded 1,944 recoveries, leaving 3,952 active cases.