Hotels Ready to Receive Guests in Quarantine

Vala Hafstað

About 100 hotels and guesthouses all over Iceland have indicated they are ready to receive guests who are in quarantine, according to Elías Bj. Gíslason, head of the Icelandic Tourist Board, who is in charge of their registration.

[UPDATE August 19: A list of the accommodations ready to receive guests in quarantine has been posted here.]

Starting tomorrow, August 19, travelers to Iceland from all countries will be required to be tested for the coronavirus at the border, followed by four to five days in quarantine and, after that, a second test. 

“It has in fact surprised us that so far, not too many of the large hotels [have signed up], and we encourage them to do so. That would be helpful,” he tells Morgunblaðið.

The businesses that have signed up are all over the country.

“Instructions from the Director of Health make it clear that people are free to drive from [Keflavík International] Airport or from Seyðisfjörður [where the ferry Norræna arrives] to their overnight accommodation, even though that means traveling between districts,” Elías states. “After that, they are expected… not to drive long distances.”

Guidelines for hotels and guesthouses regarding what to keep in mind when receiving guests who are in quarantine have been posted on the Icelandic Tourist Board’s website. 

They include the following:

Rooms for guests who are in quarantine must be in a separate wing of the building, on a separate floor, or in small, separate guesthouses.

Every such room needs to have a private bathroom.

The room must be equipped with at least a five-day supply of towels, toilet paper and soap, since hotel staff is not allowed to enter the room.

All food that has been ordered must be left in the hallway outside the room.

All information about services offered must be available in print inside the room.

Hotel staff must advice guests regarding where to go for the second coronavirus test and how to get there.

The website, too, lists the following rules for guests:

They are expected to remain in their room as much as possible.

They are allowed to take walks, but must respect the 2-meter social distancing rule and are not allowed to stay in common areas of the hotel or guesthouse.

If they have a car at their disposal, they are permitted to take rides, but must not visit tourist attractions where there are many people, nor are they allowed to use public restrooms.

For further information, see our report from yesterday here and a complete list of instructions for tourists in quarantine here

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