Gov’t’s 3-Tiered Reopening Plan Brings much-Needed Relief to Tourism Sector
AMMAN — Stakeholders in the tourism sector have welcomed the government’s three-stage plan to reopen closed sectors after months of pandemic-induced closures.
The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has sent the schedule for reopening tourism sector activities to tourism-affiliated agencies, outlining the dates, conditions and health protocols that must be followed in the three stages approved by the government to reopen closed sectors and reach the envisioned “safe summer”, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
The reopening of fitness centres within tourist facilities, indoor swimming pools in hotels, swimming pools in tourist complexes, cinemas, entertainment and tourist recreation sites, health clubs within tourist facilities and children’s play areas are all part of the tourism sector’s reopening measures, which begins on June 1, under rules and regulations stipulated by the government, according to Petra.
Talal Jamil, a marketing manager at a local travel agency, expressed optimism about the reopening of the sector as it was “on the verge of collapse with no prospect of recovery”.
“We are already witnessing a turnout in reservations, especially in the Dead Sea area and Aqaba as pools are opening again and it is summer. We expect a huge demand in the next couple of months,” Jamil told The Jordan Times on Monday.
Jamil said that people have been exploring new places in Jordan, particularly in the north such as Ajloun.
“We have more demand for new places around Jordan other than the Dead Sea area and Aqaba, which is also a positive thing,” he added.
Saleem Nawaiseh, a reservations manager at a travel agency in Amman, said that the recent government decision came at a critical time when expatriates are returning home to spend their holiday.
Nawaiseh noted that most people have been waiting for hotel facilities to reopen and have been saving up their money and their vacation days for the summer.
“Jordanians are in need of a good vacation right now, especially after the previous period. It will result in a huge demand for hotels and trips both to and from Jordan,” Nawaiseh told The Jordan Times.
Nawaiseh expressed hope that a good summer season would “hopefully compensate for the losses that the sector had suffered in the past year due to the pandemic”.
Mohammad Momani, director at a travel agency in Amman, pinned his hope on the vaccination campaign carried out by the government, which would help the sector stay open and not have to shut down again.
“Vacations were not a priority for many last year. The demand was very low, especially during summer, and many expatriates did not come back to Jordan either, but we have high hopes for this season,” he said.