World has experience a pandemic consequence like never before; Living in uncertainty of tomorrow due to tremendous eruption of COVID-19. Majority have lost their loved one and much business has turned down leaving people with nothing to hope about future.
Travel industry highly shaken by the effects of eruptions of this unforgettable pandemic worldwide – Flight companies closed for unknown period of time. When facing challenges there is always a way forward – in overcoming triumph and tribulations.
Tanzania Ministry of Natural Resource & Tourism in collaboration with Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (TATO) has launched new safety operation procedures for tour companies during COVID-19.
Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’S) are as follows –
- Every tourism entity must appoint and adequately train a COVID-19 Liaison Officer who will be the point of contact with the MoHCDGEC. The COVID-19 Liaison Officer should keep abreast of health protocols and preventive measures and be updated on all designated approved hospitals for COVID-19 testing and treatment, medical clinics and mobile clinics stationed across the country;
- Every tourism entity should ensure that updated COVID-19 precautionary measures are continuously observed and communicated accordingly with international booking agencies;
- Every tourism entity, mostly guest accommodation facility, must have in place an insurance mechanism for assisting guests to reach a designated hospital as approved by the MoHCDGEC or where possible to enable evacuation arrangements;
- All employees should be trained, exercise and adhere to COVID-19 preventive and control measures as advised by MoHCDGEC including; a) Maintaining a distance of at least one (1) meter from one person to another whilst interacting with each other; b) Hand washing with running water and soap or use hand sanitizer; c) Wearing mask as appropriate.
- All arriving flights must be Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) compliant so as to allow Airport Authorities to receive and interrogate the flight manifest for possible high-risk passengers and crews. Non-APIS compliant flights or airlines should be notified that their passengers and crews will be either subjected to MoHCDGEC (port health) pre-screening or may ultimately have their entry denied. However, passengers and crews showing signs or symptoms of COVID-19 will be directed to medical team upon arrival for consultation.
- All vehicles should be sanitized with recommended solutions between each transfer. Surfaces and objects such as car door handles, seats, binoculars or guide books used by guests during and after the tour are sanitized with a recommended disinfectant;
- All effort must be made by all tourism operators who are required to interface with guests, to protect themselves by using sanitizers, gloves and face masks or any other item(s) required for personal safety.
- Bathrooms, toilet bowls and basins must be cleaned regularly with approved disinfectant solutions and regularly sanitized. Where applicable paper towels/disposable towels and sanitary bins for safe disposal shall be made available for guests and staff;
- For indoor events, it is recommended that designated personnel open and close doors or automatic doors installed in order to prevent contamination of COVID-19.
Following these new Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’S) – there is no doubt that Tanzania is the safest destination during these times. Flights from Ethiopia and other neighboring countries has already started land in Tanzania.
Written by Edwin Ayo
Information Source: www.tatotz.org