MANILA – The hotels in Cebu are now adopting a so-called multi-use model, in particular so that the COVID-19 situation in the province is under control and the hotel industry also recovers more quickly from the crisis.
It was the hotel group in Cebu that proposed such an arrangement back in January, but was only implemented in the province last week.
The multi-purpose hotels must meet certain guidelines in order to separate the quarantine from the regular guests: different entrances and exits, separate elevators and floors.
Nineteen hotels in Cebu can now run a multi-use model, while nine more applications are pending.
Hotels are also planning to increase the number of available rooms from 3,900 to 5,000.
“Because of this, we are now very aggressive on putting rates. If you are planning to travel to Cebu we have the option to either stay in town or at the resort, “said Alfred Reyes, president of Cebu’s Hotel Resort and Restaurant Association.
The hotel group also hopes the OWWA would pay its members more to accommodate returning Filipinos from overseas, up to 2,500 to 3,500 pence daily, which is only half the room rate before the pandemic. This is despite the additional costs such as protective equipment and the provision of food and accommodation for the employees who stay in the house.
The hotel group pointed to the inequality between quarantine rates for hotels in Manila and Cebu, with the latter being almost half cheaper.
“Kung kami ang tatanungin (if you would ask us) we want the same prices as Manila. But who should we raise now? Alam ko naghihirap din ang gobyerno (I know the government is also in a difficult situation). I know it’s give and take. A small increase is now worth living. But I know there will be another surge in Cebu that is more expensive than Manila, ”Reyes said.
Last month, the government’s inter-agency Task Force on COVID-19 agreed to lower the daily arrival limit of international inbound travelers to Cebu from 1,500 to just 300 due to the lack of available quarantine facilities. The hotel group said a higher rate could attract more property owners to work as a quarantine facility.
“If you would like the OWWA hotels to help with the incoming OFWs, please increase the rates as this will give you more arrivals and more rooms available for them. And of course there were a lot of complaints in the past. What can you feed for P1400? Talagang makikita mo yung pagkain, isinusuka ng foreign workers (you can see foreign workers don’t like the food). Because of this, they realized that the time had come to improve prices, ”said Reyes.
OWWA is still examining the hotel group’s proposal to increase capacity in view of the threat posed by the more contagious Delta variant.
“The arrival cap is not just the volume of hotel SAWs, but also the health protocols and the situation. We heard the DOH talking about the Delta variant. So that’s also a factor (it’s also a factor) in determining the odds. The latest announcement by the IATF makes it clear that the countries affected by the travel ban do not have to count the mass returns to these countries towards the quota, ”said OWWA boss Hans Leo Cacdac.
(The most recent IATF statement is clear. Countries affected by the travel ban are not included in the rate of mass returns from those countries.)
A week ago, OWWA received a fraction of the approved budget of P5.2 billion for the accommodation and transportation of OFWs. Cacdac estimates that the program will support the program through September.
Cebu, Regional News, Regions, Cebu Hotels, Multipurpose Hotels, OFW Quarantine Facilities, Hotel Resort and Restaurant Association of Cebu