Coronavirus has made this a truly tough time for anyone thinking of taking a holiday. If you are sensible and find the right hotel/destination, then you can have a stress free time away. We have recently returned from a 7 day break at Kiani Beach Resort and I just want to give you my first hand impression on how they managed the Coronavirus risk.
The Greek Government
Before even stepping foot in the resort, it was very clear that the Greek Government was doing every it can to support holiday makers. Travellers must fill in a Passenger Location Form at least 24 hours before departure. On the day of travel we then received a QR code which we had to print out or download. It is incredibly important that you do this, because this is how they keep track of holiday makers movements.
At the airport we noticed that there were quite a number of random COVID tests being made, this included passengers from our flight. I’m absolutely certain that on-the-spot testing like this should be the key to opening up more travel opportunities in the future.
Checking In & Out During Coronavirus
When we arrived at Kiani Beach Resort they have changed its check-in time to 15h00 and check out to 11h00. This is to give their staff more of opportunity to clean the rooms and leave the windows open.
There were also lots of measures in the lobby area, these included protective plexiglass at the front desk, all staff wearing masks and lots of “Keeping your distance” floor signage.
I was also particularly impressed that all key cards were disinfected prior to being handed over.
Restaurant – Buffet During Coronavirus
One of the main attractions to staying at Kiani Beach Resort is its incredible Greek Inspired Buffet.
As soon as you enter, you will see hand disinfection stands at every restaurant entrance, which were being used by the majority of guests.
One of the main differences was that food from the buffet was served by one of the team members (who was wearing PPE). At first I thought that this might feel a bit awkward. We soon got used to the system and happily requested anything we wanted.The tables were also arranged with an appropriate physical distancing between guests.When it came to puddings (yep my favourite part of the meal!) they were in single use plastic packaging. I know it’s not ideal – but it was required to decrease the risk.
At the Pool
After all that lovely food, the hotel has 2 pools which we spent most of our holidays in. To help out with the social distancing, the sun beds were spaced out appropriately. We also felt that the pools weren’t that busy and there was plenty of space in them. At the poolside bars, face masks were worn by all the staff and if you wanted to grab a quick snack – then all the food was individually wrapped up.
Finally, on more than one occasion, a nurse took our temperature just to ensure we didn’t have a Covid symptoms.
Outside the Hotel
On a couple of occasions we adventured outside the hotel.
Masks in Greece are now mandatory at all times in public spaces indoors and outside (on the road). The unique exception are children under 3. Which is why stepping outside your door without a face mask in Crete and you may well get a disapproving look and a 150 euros fine. Even when it was 30C in Chania nearly everyone was wearing a mask.
Ultimately, staying in a hotel is a calculated risk. You should weigh not only your own vulnerability, but also that of the people you anticipate interacting with. It was clear that staying at Kiani Beach Resort was all about minimising risk. We had a fantastic trip. During the entire stay we felt reassured that the hotel kept the highest standards to make sure we are safe.