Image: Cok Ace addresses a meeting in Denpasar. Credit: disparda.baliprov.go.id.

Bali is hoping to design a ‘new’ tourism protocol, which will make the safety and health of visiting tourists the priority. This is in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, of course, and Bali tourism looks set to enter a new era post Covid-19.

This was revealed after a meeting of the Covid-19 Impact Management and Recovery Acceleration Team led by Bali Deputy Governor, Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati (Cok Ace) in the Vice Governor’s meeting room, Niti Mandala in Denpasar on Tuesday (12/5).

Deputy Chairperson of the Covid-19 Impact Handling and Recovery team, I Gusti Agung Rai Suryawijaya, who was contacted by nusabali.com yesterday afternoon, stated that much was discussed in the meeting which took place from 9am to 1pm yesterday. “Specifically concerning tourism, we must prepare Bali for post Covid-19,” said Rai Suryawijaya.”In the event Bali tourism could get moving earlier, everything has to be prepared, including a new health protocol or SOP,” he added.

This protocol, he said, is very important in order to not allow Bali tourism to be hit again by a second wave of Covid-19 as was recently experienced in several other countries. “This needs to be anticipated and prepared. The hotels have to have their own SOP, the airlines too. The ODTW, or tourist objects also must have it. Each of them must be made and become the new norm in tourism,” said Rai Suryawijaya.

Contacted separately, the Head of the Bali Tourism Board, Putu Astawa stated much the same as his colleague. “The direction of the meeting was to prepare an SOP for a new era of Bali tourism,” he said. This means that tourists who will come to Bali, will feel safe, comfortable and will have guaranteed health conditions.

“For example, the protocol at a hotel, or airport must be complete with a health and body temperature check and so on,” he said.

Meanwhile, Bali Deputy Governor Cok Ace said that with Bali’s positive progress in handling the Covid-19 situation it is expected to be the first destination to be opened for tourism. “That’s the hope of the central government. Of course, we in Bali must study the situation very carefully,” Cok Ace said.

It was also discussed that Bali had to be careful and take all factors into account before opening up the tourism areas again. “Even when we open, how we open tourism is still being discussed. Will it be like tourism before, or do we cluster several places or areas to open first,” he said.

Because, he said, it certainly will not be like before the Covid-19 pandemic. “When it is open, we won’t want to ruin what we’ve achieved until now (in handling Covid-19),” he said.

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