Visiting London always requires a level of organization that wouldn’t be necessary for all cities. With its magnificent size of 1500 square kilometers, 32 distinct boroughs, dozens of museums, 6 airports, and vast underground transport network, there’s a lot to take on board if you want a well-organized trip to London. This year is burdened with the additional complications of COVID 19, giving London visitors an extra concern during their trip.
Whilst the COVID 19 lockdown in England ended at the beginning of July, many public transport services and customer-facing businesses have had to reopen. Not only has this been because of increased demand, but because the employees must also start earning again. The ambiguities of government policy on COVID 19 have meant that the companies themselves have had to be the masters of their own fate, rather than leaving it in government hands. Whilst some feel comfortable reopening, others have kept their doors closed to business in an attempt to be safer than sorry.
The ambiguities of the governments “Stay Alert” slogan can, therefore, be read differently on a case by case basis. This not only goes for companies who are beginning to reopen but for the customers too. One such industry that has faced difficult decisions over opening their doors is the hotel industry. Whilst need has increased with more international travel now possible to and from many countries, many people are still shielding or are at higher risk of serious illness if they catch COVID 19. With that in mind, it’s always best to factor in tips for safety and travel before your trip to hotels that are open in London.
Below you can find a range of factors for safe hotel stays, alongside travel tips and safety measures to adhere to during your visit. With Paddington hotel special offers now available at luxury accommodation like The Chilworth, now is a better time than ever to take advantage of the ultra-safe rooms here. That is of course unless you don’t feel comfortable or safe in doing so. With that in mind, we hope that the following tips and tricks will help you prepare for any potential London hotel stay.
COVID Business Guidelines For Hotels
Before we give you tips on your London hotel stay, it’s a good idea to examine what measures are in place and should be adhered to by all London hotels. You can gauge the level of safety at a hotel via its user reviews and on its website, ensuring that you feel fully secure during your visit to London.
In the UK, measures are still in place meaning that legally you must maintain a distance of two metres from other people when in public spaces This might mean bars, hotel lobbies or indeed in the street. You can rest assured that all staff at the Chilworth Spa hotel are strict in their social distancing policy when facing customers.
Facemasks To Be Worn In Customer-Facing Roles
Further to the social distancing rules in place, all customer-facing staff at hotels in London must wear facemasks on shift. This is not only as a bar to the transmission of COVID 19 but as an act of solidarity, sending a message that you will put other people’s safety first. It is only right then, that customers also adhere to these face mask and social distancing rules as well.
All hotel surfaces must be sanitised with an anti-bacterial wash between guests. This means that any potential infection spread by a former guest in your room will have been eradicated from the surfaces. This means that you can safely enjoy your stay without the worry of catching COVID from the bathroom surfaces, bedsheets and tabletops in your room.
You have the freedom to opt-in or out of room service and housekeeping. This means that if you are not comfortable with the idea of a stranger cleaning your room, then you will not have to face other people during your visit. This is also to stop any spread from you as well.
An Organised Strategy For Infection Breakout
All hotels in London must have a strategy in place for if the infection does flare up within their building. Like on the cruise ships where early reports of COVID 19 were identified, all hotels must have a policy for quarantining their guests and staff so that the infection does not spread.
Contact tracing has taken different forms in different countries. Whilst some may use apps to trace infection, others use email or phone numbers to contact those who might be at risk. You’ll find that most customer-facing services that are open in London will require you to register either your email or phone number before entering the venue so that if infection were to break out that day, you could be contacted and suggested to quarantine for two weeks.
Questions To Ask Before Booking Your Trip
It’s all well and good knowing that these precautions have been set in place, but If you’re planning a trip to our London Paddington Hotel, then take a moment to ask yourself the following questions.
Are You At High Risk?
If you suffer from lung conditions such as asthma, or if you have diabetes, heart problems or any other underlying health conditions at all, then it is best to consult a doctor about the risk you’re putting yourself under if you decide to travel. Older people are also asked to consider the importance of the journey they’re planning to make.
Is Your Trip Vital?
Even if you’re not suffering a health condition, it’s important to assess how vital your journey is. Whether abroad or across the country, you must be extra vigilant not to spread the COVID 19 virus, and should never travel if you are, or suspect you are infected.
Are You Travelling From Another Country?
Another way of gauging your risk of being infected by COVID 19 or infected others, take a look at the current statistics for your countries infection rate. If you are travelling from or to a country with a high infection rate, consider whether it is appropriate for you to do so.
What Is That Country’s COVID 19 Policy?
Whilst government policies vary from country to country, many may require you to quarantine or take a COVID test before or after travelling. Factor this into your travel arrangements and make time to carry out the necessary safeguarding measure.
How Far Are You Willing To Go To Stay Safe?
And on that note, not everyone is comfortable quarantining for longer periods of time or wearing a face mask. Whether for mental or physical health, make sure that you are comfortable with the safeguarding laws put in place by the country your travelling to before you confirm your booking.
How Are You Travelling?
Your method of travel is also important, not just because of the density of people you will be travelling with, but because of the stations or services in between. It is difficult to socially distance on a train for instance, especially if travelling at London rush hour.
Where Is The Area You Are Staying In?
The area you’re planning to visit has as much an effect on your risk of infection as the hotel or accommodation itself. It’s all well and good if your lodgings abide by strict sanitisation rules, but if the street outside is very busy and the people outside are not considering social distancing measures, then your accommodations policy might as well not be in place at all. Do some research into the area you’re staying in, especially if you plan on exploring the neighbourhood and enjoying the local culture.
What Is the Infection Rate of The Area You’re Planning To Visit?
Not only should you consider the infection rate of the country as a whole, but the local area you’re visiting as well. As we move into the seventh month of COVID surges, many countries are imposing local lockdowns. Just the other day in the UK, parts of the North East of England went into lockdown. This could very much happen in the area you’re planning to visit, so if you don’t want to miss your flight, train or bus home, then make sure you are keeping tabs on the local status of your destination.
How Close Will You Be To Other Guests?
Are you attending a conference, a wedding or a similar event? If so, keep in mind the risk of social distancing measures not being stuck to. Sometimes this can’t be helped, and if you’re healthy and the other attendees are too, then it won’t matter as much. It’s difficult to keep tabs on though, and like much of the above, comes down to yet another personal judgement call.
Can You Ventilate Your Room?
Whilst you’ll most likely be staying in a private room, or at least one shared with members of your “bubble”, make sure there are windows or at least a throughflow of fresh air to stop any potential germs settling. This is especially important if your room has previously been used by someone else. Where possible, try to book a room that has not been used for at least a few days.