As we continue to observe Tourism Awareness Month 2019 under the theme “Tourism is a force for good in Guyana”, it is opportune to remind ourselves of the importance of meeting standards in this crucial sector – the Tourism Sector.
As a nation, we can improve our tourism readiness with available standards and guidelines developed for the sector.
At the Guyana National Bureau of Standards (GNBS), there are a number of standards available, which were developed to enhance the experience of visitors to our shores, and these standards include the Code of Practice for tour operators and tour guides, Bed and breakfasts facilities and Code of Practice for quality management in the restaurant service.
Today’s article focuses on another tourism standard, the Code of Practice for Assessment, licensing, registration, classification and grading of the accommodation sector. This national standard, which was published in the year 2003, specifies the requirements for the monitoring and management of hotels, apartments and guesthouses. It sets out procedures for the grading of these facilities by the Authority – the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA).
The standard addresses rates for various types of accommodation including sleeping accommodation only, and sleeping accommodation with breakfasts and all inclusive.
How rates and other information are presented to visitors upon arrival at accommodation facilities are also outlined in the standard.
Requirements for electrical installation and supply in accommodation facilities are clearly outlined in the document which include electricity supply intake, condition of installation, lighting levels and emergency lighting.
In addition, the standard highlights fire safety requirements which include means of escape in the event of a fire, directional signs, fire extinguishers and alarm systems.
The storage, preparation and service of food and beverages at accommodation facilities are also important aspects covered by the standards and these will ensure that guests are provided with meals that are safe and wholesome.
Storage and cleanliness of utensils, temperature considerations for cooked and precooked foods, self-service food facilities and the manner of garbage disposal are the main aspects addressed in relation to storage, preparation and service of food and beverages.
Other key areas addressed by the standard include the general hygiene of establishments, the hygiene of employees and the requirements for public areas such as washrooms, dining area, swimming pool and beaches.
Hoteliers and owners of other properties designed for accommodating local and overseas guests should see this code of practice as crucial for the enhancement of their facilities and ultimately the local tourism sector.
Hence, the acquisition and use of this Code of Practice is necessary for these stakeholders to ensure that local tourism thrives and remains a good force in Guyana. Copies of this standard are available at the Guyana National Bureau of Standards.
For further information on this subject, please contact the GNBS on Telephone Numbers: 219-0065, 219-0066 or website: www.gnbsgy.org
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