London, COVID And Tourism – What You Need To Know

COVID And Tourism

London is one of the top tourist destinations in the UK and is made up of 1500 square miles, 32 boroughs and thousands of years of history. That gives visitors plenty to explore and do during their visit to the city, from street tours to spa weekends near me.

Whatever your aims during your London visit, the lockdown that begun on November 5th will see a month of social distancing, working from home and venue, pub and restaurant closures. Many public-facing businesses, galleries and museums will be closed during the new lockdown, alleged to only be in place for a month. This runs the risk of leaving those who are visiting London and might be stranded here, at a loss for entertainment. That being said, many hotels are still open, but not for everyday customers and there are still possibilities for tidbits of tourism. Below, we’ve outlined how the second lockdown is going to affect London visitors, both national and international, as well as the ways that you can still enjoy the city whilst keeping safe and adhering to the government guidelines.

What Does The November 5th Lockdown Entail?

Alleged to only be implemented for a month, the November 5th lockdown will see the entirety of the UK fall under a strict and regimented lockdown. The UK lockdown is being enforced due to a rising number of COVID 19 cases and fear of more fatalities over the winter period because of it. This means that Chilworth cleanliness strategies and social distancing will still be implemented across our hotels and many others, but only very specific groups of people will be allowed to stay overnight or indeed, visit.

Closure Of Pubs And Restaurants

This has meant that there will be a closure of pubs and restaurants all across the UK. Workers will be out of jobs for the month, with the UK furlough scheme providing at least some of their payment throughout lockdown. That being said, takeaway services will still be running, so those who have a hankering for their favourite restaurant’s cooking over the lockdown can still order in from home.

Closure Of Non-Essential Businesses

This has also meant the offices of non-essential businesses will be shutting over the lockdown. Where possible, workers who have not been furloughed should keep on doing their jobs from home. Whether you’re an admin assistant or an investment banker, those who can work from home should be doing so.

Avoid Public Transport

Except for key workers such as teachers, medical staff, law enforcement and firefighters, people who can work and stay in their local area, should do so, thus avoiding the use of public transport. You can still drive and cycle, but public transport services are hotbeds for the COVID virus, making it risky to travel. The London Underground is an especially easy place to catch coronavirus, it’s narrow walkways and bad ventilation exacerbating the potential spread.

Stay At Home Where Possible

Part of the UK lockdown rules means that you should only be leaving the house for specific activities or reasons.

Shop Visits Require Facemasks

Of course, people will still be allowed to do their daily shop but will have to wear a facemask and use hand sanitiser when visiting. There will also be other protections put in place for customers and shop assistants alike. These include plastic screens at the checkout counters and a smaller number of people allowed in shops at any one time.

Overnight Stays Are Not Allowed

Unfortunately for London visitors, overnight stays are restricted under the UK lockdown. This means that the Chilworth London Paddington hotel will not be permitted to welcome their usual guests. If you’re a tourist from another country, you’ll most likely have to return home before or when the lockdown begins, whilst locals who wanted a luxury staycation will also be restricted from staying anywhere but their home.

Avoid Meeting People Outside Of Your Household

Whilst you can go for a walk with up to one person from your household, you won’t be able to visit or socialise with people outside your home.

Try Not To Travel Outside Of Your Local Area

As mentioned above, it’s only for very specific reasons that you should use public transport. If you need to drive somewhere, then make sure that you are not driving out of your county or borough.

So What Can You Do?

Whilst it might be difficult to enjoy many of the things that you came to London for, there are still ways you can see and enjoy the city and local area.

How Can Hotels Remain Open?

Hotels will be restricted for non-essential workers and the needy, although this is yet to be confirmed and as this blog is written, we’re simply going with what the situation was during the last lockdown. If you are a doctor who has had to travel for work or are homeless, hotels might be set up for essential workers or as a safe space to help the vulnerable who may otherwise be on the street.

Funerals And Weddings

The former is sad and the latter is joyful, but events such as funerals and weddings can give you a chance to enjoy London with a larger group of people. That being said, as it stands weddings are only allowed to have 6 people to attend and funerals are allowed to have up to 30, or 15 in the case of ash scatterings and stone settings. This might also mean being put up in a hotel for the night, especially if you are a visitor to the city, where you could book our accommodation due to our Chilworth precautionary measures certifying us a safe way to stay abroad.

Exercise Outside

You can still enjoy the local parks, landscapes and atmospheres of London. If you’re a jogger, ready yourself for a half marathon through the city centre or a spot of yoga in Hyde Park. Make sure not to travel too far out of your locality though.