A growing number of nations across the world including the US and Australia have now banned all but essential travel to and from China, as a consequence of growing concerns about the spread of Coronavirus.
There have to date been two cases of Coronavirus diagnosed in the UK and both were attending the University of York while staying at the Staycity Aparthotels hotel in York, ITV News reported on the outbreak and this report can be seen below.
The Government are now asking people who have travelled to the UK from the Hubei province in China within the last 14 days to stay indoors, avoid contact with other people and to contact the NHS 111 line.
Anyone who has travelled from anywhere else in China, not including Macau or Hong Kong, to the UK in the last 14 days and develops symptoms of cough, fever or shortness of breath should immediately self-isolate, even if symptoms are minor, and call the NHS 111 line.
There are currently very little travel restrictions in place with people still arriving in the UK from China. Four planes are due to land at Heathrow tomorrow from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, bringing a total of circa 1,200 passengers.
The question now is, if and when new travel restrictions on travel from China will be imposed by the UK Government and will the they follow the US, Australia and others with outright travel bans.
The health implications of more people being diagnosed with Coronavirus are of concern to everyone, and given that most people travelling from China to the UK will stay in a hotel while travelling, hotels will be more concerned than most.
A spokesperson of Staycity Aparthotels hotel in York where the two cases of Coronavirus diagnosed in the UK were staying released a statement saying: “We have now received confirmation that two guests staying in one of our apartments in York have been tested positive for the coronavirus. We have been advised by Public Health England that there is minimal ongoing risk of infection to either guests or staff, and as such our York property remains open for business.”
While Paul Hunter, a professor of medicine at the University of East Anglia, slammed the hotel for staying open following the outbreak, insisting the Department of Health had a ‘duty’ to warn the public of risks.
Needless to say, other guests staying at the Staycity Aparthotels hotel in York were furious at the lack of information and at the hotel remaining open.
With circa 400,000 Chinese tourists visiting the UK in 2019 and spending on average £1,678 during their stay, the growing effect from Coronavirus on the uk hotel sector in 2020 will be significant. How significant can only unfold in the days, weeks and months ahead. The question many will be asking is having already advised all British nationals to leave China, how long before the Government suspends entry to the UK by all people travelling from China? Not very we suspect.