Cancun coronavirus update: an upturn in hotel occupation

Cancun, which belongs to the jurisdiction of Benito Juarez, has accumulated 2,875 cases of coronavirus and 546 deaths. It is the municipality with the most cases in Quintana Roo, followed by Solidaridad (Playa del Carmen).

 Cancun coronavirus situation: The first tourists appear on the beaches of Cancun. Images captured this noon. Credits by Esmaragdo Camaz
Cancun coronavirus situation: The first tourists appear on the beaches of Cancun. Images captured this noon. Credits by Esmaragdo Camaz

The director of Tourism in Benito Juarez, Francisco Lopez Reyes, has assured that Cancun could go from orange to yellow next week due to the reduction in the number of coronavirus infections compared to the south of the state of Quintana Roo. This will allow for an occupancy rate of over 60% in the hotel industry, which cannot exceed 30% at present.

Switching to the yellow signal will allow having an occupation of more than 60% in the activities, which undoubtedly with it the tourism sector and would have a significant rebound in the current summer period, after months of collapse, publishes Noticaribe.

The coronavirus figures currently handled by Cancun are very positive contrary to what was predicted in previous weeks.

The official explained that the State Public Security Secretariat could apply mobility restrictions in Cancún in the coming days to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The decision will be taken in coordination with the City Hall of Benito Juarez and will allow Cancun to change to yellow traffic lights because the number of infections is reduced.

Although the hotels have opened at 30% of their capacity and the average occupation remains below 20%, Cancun has already received nearly 70,000 tourists in less than a month of economic recovery, figures that fill the sector with optimism.

Cancun and Isla Mujeres lead the occupation

The daily report of the Hotel Association of Cancun, Puerto Morelos, and Isla Mujeres states that Cancun and Isla Mujeres remain at the forefront of hotel occupancy with percentages exceeding 20%. Cancun has reached an accumulated occupancy rate of 20.6% as of July 7th and 23% on that date, while Isla Mujeres had a 22.2% and 23.2 occupancy rate in the same order.

Cancun coronavirus update
Cancun coronavirus update

For its part, Puerto Morelos reported percentages of 17.4 and 19.2, respectively. The sum of hotels closed in the area is 74 with a total number of rooms closed of 17,649. On the other hand, Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste, concessionaire of the Cancun International Airport, registered this Tuesday a total of 138 operations with 67 arrivals, of which 40 were national and 27 international.

Although hotels have opened at 30% of their capacity and average occupancy remains below 20%, Cancun has already received nearly 70,000 tourists in less than a month of economic recovery.

Currently, about 13,000 visitors remain in the 120 hotels that have reopened since June 8. Occupancy remains below 20% with just over 6,500 rooms in operation, which corresponds to 30% of the 20,922 rooms that are open, according to data from the Hotel Association of Cancun, Puerto Morelos, and Isla Mujeres.

Cancun coronavirus cases trend line. Source: Ministry of Health
Cancun coronavirus cases trend line. Source: Ministry of Health

The director of the tourism office of the municipal council, Francisco Lopez, has stressed that these indicators are expected to remain upward as air activity at the Cancun International Airport is reactivated to reach 50% occupancy by the end of the year when 100% of the hotels are open, Quintanaroohoy publishes.

Tourism represents one of the main sources of income for the country, about 8.7 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and authorities and experts had already warned that the pandemic would deal a severe blow to the sector that employs some 4.5 million people, according to official figures.

Beach controversy

Regarding the controversy generated by the opening of beaches only for tourists staying in hotels, the leader of Cancún hoteliers, Roberto Cintrón Gómez, justified this measure by arguing that it is temporary, which is also necessary to reduce the risk of coronavirus infection.

"We have fought so that visitors can have access to the beaches, with certain restrictions, such as avoiding groups of more than 10 people, which is working and we even ask that it be one at a time, and thus avoid risks in general, because the few tourists are taking a risk when they go on vacation, but they come to that, to the beach, and that we must bear in mind," he said.

It is expected that there will be a new pronouncement from both authorities and hoteliers after the statements of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, during his morning conference in which he announced that he will ask Miguel Torruco Marques, Secretary of Tourism to verify why the beaches of the state of Quintana Roo are open only to tourists and not to the general public.

What activities you can do in Cancun

This week, Cancun, the jewel of the Mexican Caribbean, dawned with the State Government's orange-colored Epidemiological Risk Light, which means that the city took another step in its reopening, and numerous activities that until now were prohibited by the COVID-19 pandemic were resumed. Here is the complete list of what can and cannot be done in Cancun.

Permitted activities:

Opening of associations, organizations, and religious services: Churches, synagogues, and centers of worship.

Shopping centers, department stores, and retail trade in clothes, fashion, boutiques, and shoes: after weeks closed by the pandemic, these establishments are allowed to resume activities.

Stationery stores, sale of handicrafts, gifts and novelties, jewelry, and other personal items: these stores, so frequent in Cancun due to tourism, are also no longer prohibited.

Hairdressers, beauty salons, esthetics, massage, and spa: good news for those who need an urgent haircut, or to relax after the stress of quarantine. All of these establishments are reopening to the public.

Theatres and cinemas: these cultural activities are also resumed. Sale of cell phones and accessories.

Travel agencies, tourist guides, and car rental companies: these three services, really affected by the COVID-19 crisis, want to return to normal and recover the heavy losses. Internet café and shops on the public streets.

Golf courses, theme parks, and water parks and spas: in the new phase, the authorities also grant them an increase in capacity.

Hunting and trapping, animal breeding and exploitation, forestry, and related services: these services are almost back to normal.

The corporate, stock market, and investment activities.

Accommodation companies: holiday rentals, hotels, and hostels are able to rent rooms.

Real estate companies, real estate rentals, and condominium management. Tourist marinas, public and private water sports. Tourist transport companies.

Museums and historical sites: these places will receive visitors. In addition, Adventure and Nature Operators will now be able to work, and Diving and Water Activities Operators are authorized to serve people, a percentage that is calculated according to the capacity of their groups.

Restaurants, snacks, and soft drinks, cheap kitchens, lunch shops, taquerías, cafeterias, pizzas, food preparation, and sale.

Accounting and administrative services, consulting, and advice; as well as professional, scientific, and technical services will be able to operate in their offices. Companies that support other businesses (cleaning, secretarial, hiring, or packaging), are able to recover their staff.

Sale of household goods, computers, articles for interior decoration, and used items. Sale of motor vehicles.

Only with health certification can companies reopen in Quintana Roo

The Health Safety Certification prepared by the Quintana Roo government will be a requirement for about 1,600 companies in the state to return to tentative operations.

Marisol Vanegas Perez, Secretary of Tourism in Quintana Roo, reported that this certification will be free and necessary for tourism companies, from hotels to theme parks, travel agencies, and transporters, to guarantee a health safety standard that will allow them to minimize the risk of Covid-19 infections, once the reopening of the sector at the state level begins.

This is a request from travel intermediaries to know which companies will be ready to restart operations, with the guarantee that the risk of contagion during their stay in Quintana Roo destinations is reduced as much as possible.

More than 150 evaluation criteria are contemplated to be met by companies to resume operations, since from the airport to transportation to hotels, as well as a departure to shopping centers and restaurants are part of a holiday experience that will have to be subjected to these new health protocols.

"It will be in the interest of the companies to appear in the list of certifications, which will protect not only the business activity, but also workers and inhabitants in general".

This certification is available on the web site of the Quintana Roo Ministry of Tourism so that around 1,600 companies can upload their information and become part of the promotion that will be made of this new health safety component that will become part of the added values that the travel industry will have to adopt after the contingency.

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