COVID-19 UPDATES for Wildlife, Adventure and Activity Operators in Scotland

COVID-19 Baseline Measures 27th August 2021
A reminder to all operators that baseline COVID measures remain in place to suppress the virus.
As you will all be aware, we remain in a delicate place with high rates of infection across the country, so we need to collectively focus on maximising adherence on current baseline measures.
Please see here a statement from Cabinet Secretary,  Kate Forbes and a reminder of the baseline measures here and tourism and hospitality guidance here.

Please see the latest Guidance from Wild Scotland here

Sign up here to receive regular news and advice during COVID-19

  • Adventure Operators Sign up here
  • DMOs, Industry and Sector groups sign up here

Latest Government Update

28th September 2021

The First Minister updated Parliament today on the introduction of the COVID certification scheme in Scotland as well as a new £25 million fund that is being made available to help improve ventilation in business premises: https://www.gov.scot/…/coronavirus-covid-19-vaccine…/
Further guidance has been published on the certification scheme. Anyone over the age of 18, who wants to go to a large event or to a late night venue will be required to provide evidence that they are fully vaccinated, or evidence that they are exempt. To facilitate this, the NHS Covid Status app will go live on Thursday.
The legal obligation comes into force at 5am on Friday this week. However, a grace period until 18 October will be in place, before any business could face enforcement action for non-compliance. This will allow businesses to test, adapt and build confidence in the practical arrangements they will need to put in place to be compliant with the scheme.
Further information is available here:https://www.gov.scot/…/vaccine-certification…/
The First Minister also gave details of a £25 million package being made available to SMEs to improve ventilation and reduce the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission. Grants will target a wide range of high risk settings where people come into close proximity such as restaurants, bars and gyms.https://www.gov.scot/…/improving-ventilation-to-tackle…/
Changes to the rules on international travel will take effect from 4 October. This means that the blanket requirement for pre-departure tests for people travelling into Scotland will be removed. People who have been fully vaccinated – or who are under 18 – will no longer need to provide a pre-departure test result if they are coming from countries not on the red list. Further details are available here:https://www.gov.scot/…/international-travel-testing…/
The First Minister’s full speech is available here:https://www.gov.scot/…/coronavirus-covid-19-update…/

 

3rd August 2021

“Wild Scotland welcomes the update from the First Minister on 3rd August 2021. Whilst this will be a massive relief for business in the outdoor sector, many of whom have been running at 50% capacity or less due to physical distancing and group size restrictions, we are aware that we are nearing the end of the season with a long winter ahead. Not forgetting those businesses in the sector whom have a reliance on international visitors. This has been a long journey and we are not out of  the woods yet – additional support will be needed for survival ” Victoria Brooks

 

Read Full Statement Here

  • The First Minister announced that Scotland would move ‘beyond Level 0’ in terms of the further easing of Covid-19 restrictions from Monday 9th August and that a number of mitigation measures will remain.

Changes from the 9th August

  • The move beyond Level 0 mean the lifting of most of the remaining legally imposed restrictions, such as physical distancing and limits to the size of social gatherings.
  • However, on physical distancing, while the law will not stipulate this, the Scottish Government will continue to advise keeping a safe distance from other households and avoiding crowded places.
  • No venues will be legally required to close.
  • There are a number of changes to self-isolation rules:
    • Adults identified as close contacts of someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 will also no longer be automatically required to self-isolate for 10 days.
    • Anyone double-vaccinated with at least two weeks passed since their second dose and who has no symptoms will be able to end self-isolation if they return a negative PCR test.
    • The same conditions will also apply to anyone aged between 5-17 years old, even if they have not been vaccinated. The requirement to take a PCR test will not apply to children under 5.
    • Test and Protect will also implement revised guidance for under 18s, meaning that the blanket isolation of whole classes in schools will no longer happen and a targeted approach, that only identifies children and young people who are higher risk close contacts, will be adopted.

Further detail about measures announced today and updated guidance for the education sector will be published shortly.

Further guidance will be provided to businesses to help them adopt measures to mitigate risks, including ensuring good ventilation; maintaining good hand hygiene; practising respiratory hygiene; getting vaccinated; and continuing to engage with Test and Protect.

Some baseline measures will remain in place:

  • it will continue to be the law, subject to exceptions, that face coverings must be worn in indoor public places and on public transport
  • Test & Protect will continue to contact-trace positive cases. To assist with this there will be a continued requirement for indoor hospitality and similar venues to collect the contact details of customers. Anyone who is required to self-isolate will, if eligible, continue to have access to support
  • we will work closely with local incident management teams on appropriate outbreak control measures
  • we will continue to use travel restrictions, as and when necessary, to restrict the spread of outbreaks and protect against the risk of importation of new variants
  • for now, we will continue to advise home working where possible, recognising that some staff will start to return to offices in line with staff wellbeing discussions and business need. we will encourage employers to consider for the longer term, as the Scottish Government is doing, a hybrid model of home and office working – which may, of course, have benefits beyond the need to control a virus
  • we will, for a limited period, keep in place a gateway process through which organisers of outdoors events of more than 5000 and indoor events of more than 2000 will have to apply for permission. This will allow us and local authorities to be assured of the arrangements in place to reduce risk
  • we will continue to issue appropriate guidance to assist individuals and businesses to reduce the risk of transmission as much as possible, such as rigorous hygiene, including regular hand washing

Covid-19 Passports

  • The FM noted that the Scottish Government were continuing to consider the limited use of Covid-19 passports for access to “higher risk” venues in the future.
  • The Scottish Government are developing an app to make access to “Covid status certificates” easier for international travel and this will be launched next month.
  • The app will have functionality to support the use of such certificates for domestic settings should the Scottish Government decide that this is appropriate.

 

Tourism and Hospitality Guidance

Guidance for the tourism and hospitality sector, including procedures for staff and customer safety and an operations checklist, has been published ahead of the 26 April reopening. Guidance covering Wedding receptions and funeral wakes is also included.

 

Further updates

Updated guidance on face coverings and face masks has also been published. The guidance includes information on face coverings in the workplace and additional information for businesses or operators carrying out close contact work. In addition, a general advice card for everyone at work has been published and a specific advice card for those working in the waste sector providing guidance for managers and workers is also now available.

 

Useful Links to funding

Round 2 of the Marine and Outdoor Fund will open for applications on Wednesday 8th September. Please see more information here.

FIND BUSINESS SUPPORT –  this is the GO TO website for all the information you need regarding coronavirus funding and support.

Funding grants for tourism businesses in Scotland during COVID-19 pandemic including tour operators fund, tour guides fund, events fund and more…

We’re Good to Go Industry Standard

  • The ‘We’re Good to Go’ Scheme, created so businesses across all sectors of the tourism industry in Scotland can demonstrate to the public that they are adhering to the respective Government and public health guidance has been extended.  You can sign up to the scheme here and will benefit from a streamlined application process.
  • VisitBritain has announced that tourism businesses in the UK registered to the ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard scheme can now automatically be issued with the international ‘Safe Travels’ stamp from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
    The WTTC stamp enables travellers to recognise destinations around the world which have adopted global standardised protocols – so they can experience ‘Safe Travels.’
    VisitBritain is coordinating the Safe Travels stamp issue in the UK, on behalf of the WTTC, for businesses registered to its ‘We’re Good To Go’ scheme, with those who welcome international visitors particularly encouraged to use the Safe Travels stamp.
    Any business that is signed up to ‘We’re Good To Go’, can now log back into their online ‘We’re Good to Go’ account and download the Safe Travels logo from there.
    For more information, please click here.

Business Support & Events

The Scottish Tourism Emergency Response Group (STERG) wants to help you plan during these uncertain times and has created a scenario planning toolkit to do just that. FIND OUT MORE 

Digital Boost Webinar Series 

Business Gateway Webinars 

Adventure Industry & Tourism Events 2021

 

Support Funding for Marine & Outdoor Tourism Update

Round 2 of the Marine and Outdoor Fund will open for applications on Wednesday 8th September. Please see more information here.

Other information and Links

Tourism and Hospitality Guidance

Sport and physical activity guidance 

Scotland’s Protection Levels 

Local Protection Levels 

Local advice and measures 

Government Advice and FAQ’s

Guidance for Transport Operators.

Scottish Enterprise Advice and Support 

People Support – Skills Development Scotland 

Business Gateway – digital boost and other useful webinars 

Free Protect Scotland App from NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect.  This is now available to download at protect.scot and via the App Store and Google Play.
The free Protect Scotland App is the next step in stopping the spread of coronavirus and complements existing contact tracing measures, helping us to determine contacts that we may have otherwise missed, and allows us to alert people at risk far more quickly so they can steps to reduce the risk of infecting others.

Adventure Travel COVID-19 Health and Safety Guidelines 

Risk Assessment Templates (HSE)

First Aid Advice for First Responders UK Government 

VisitScotland –coronavirus support and information

Local Advice and measures– Advice and guidance relating to local outbreaks or clusters of coronavirus cases.

Scottish Government- What you can and cannot do

Sail Scotland Guidance for Marine Tourism Sector 

Tourism Recovery recommendations 

Coronavirus support & information | VisitScotland.org COVID Advice Pages

UK Segments during the Covid 19 pandemic (visitscotland.org) UK Market Segments during COVID

 

JOIN Wild Scotland and be part of one collective VOICE for the outdoor tourism sector.

 

 

Previous updates and useful links relating to Covid-19

Please note that advice from the Scottish Government may differ from that of England and Wales.