South Africa’s essential workers risk exposure to the Coronavirus every single time they go to work. Furthermore, there is a greater risk that they may expose their families to the virus after interacting with large amounts of customers instore during the day, and then returning home each evening, after traveling long distances in public transport.
Leading corporate travel and accommodation supplier, Villas and Hotels for Africa, has launched a seamless digital online accommodation booking portal for essential businesses to easily find and book lodging for their essential services staff which is close to their place of work. This helps to prevent staff from infection while traveling long distances using public transport to get home and relieves the worry of these workers bringing the virus home to their loved ones.
“The essential services operations absolutely have to stay open during the lockdown, to supply consumers with critical necessities,” says Carmen Sampayo-Deavall, director and owner of Villas and Hotels for Africa. “Booking their staff into pre-sanitised, clean and comfortable rooms which are close to their place of work is an excellent way for them to help maintain business continuity by minimising staff health risks.” “Villas and Hotels for Africa’s online booking portal gives business quick and easy access to nearly 20 000 rooms nationwide, making it possible to accommodate all employees at lodgings close to work, affordably” she says.
Essential businesses, large and small, can use the advanced search function on the portal to find a detailed list of accommodation available nearby to all their branches located throughout South Africa. Personalised versions of the booking platform are also available for companies with multiple branches. “We understand how our economy is struggling. Our team at Villas and Hotels for Africa have personally contacted all lodgings to negotiate reduced rates, to make it possible for businesses to accommodate their staff affordably,” says Sampayo-Deavall. She says that prices start from just R250 per night for a single room in a B&B facility.
“To further help and support the hospitality industry, we have waived all of commissions on this project so that one hundred percent of the price paid goes to the hotel and therefore towards helping to keep the hospitality industry alive,” Sampayo-Deavall continues. “We want to do everything we can to help save our industry and especially the hundreds of thousands of staff employed in hospitality, such as the waiters, housekeeping staff, kitchen and scullery workers and front-of-house staff, to name just a few of the people affected in our sector.”
Re-open your business by making your establishment an ‘essential accommodation provider’ The online booking portal gives hotels, guest houses, self-catering apartments and even hostels the opportunity to re-open their doors to the essential working community by making their establishments available as an ‘essential accommodation provider’ during the COVID-19 lockdown.
“By becoming an essential accommodation provider, many establishments are able to re-open their rooms to guests again, offering a home from home stay,” says Sampayo-Deavall. “Our goal is simple. Let’s keep our essential workers safe by giving them a secure and comfortable place to call home that is close to their place of work and alleviating the need to travel long distances to get to work. Let’s re-ignite our hospitality industry by making as many establishments as possible available as essential accommodation providers during this unprecedented lockdown time in our country,” she concludes.