Dr. Bijan Khazai, Chief Executive Officer (left) and Dr. Trevor Girard, Director of Standards and Accreditation (right).

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought to light the vulnerability of the tourism industry to major disasters. As the tourism sector shifts towards a “new normal”, it is necessary for tourism businesses to adjust their protocols to meet new standards in health and safety and build trust among travelers. At Hotel Resilient, we support the tourism industry in planning and preparing for crises and now we have turned our attention to responding to COVID-19 with our full capacity. As a scientific benchmarking and certification body, Hotel Resilient works hard to develop international standards for the accommodation sector. In various countries, we have been working hand in hand with government authorities, industry partners, hotels and hotel associations to align our international standards with the needs of the local destination. Since June 2020 we have been working in Palestine with the Ministry of Tourism & Antiquities, the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ), the Palestine Tourism Recovery Taskforce and other partners to develop the COVID-19 Tourism Operation Manual for Palestine. These protocols align with international standards and best practices but are tailored to the needs of the Palestine tourism industry through the valuable input of the project partners.

Hotel Resilient’s risk specialists have been intensely involved from the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, reviewing international guidelines, industry best practices and the latest scientific research related to the pandemic. We are very proud to say that the COVID-19 Operation Manual for Palestine is one of the most detailed and comprehensive manuals of its kind. From hotels to food vendors, museums to donkey rides and nargila bars, all facets of tourism are covered. The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and its team of partners have gone beyond standards to develop a range of tools to support tourism businesses in Palestine, which now include COVID-19 training, communication material, e-learning and auditing software. The Palestine COVID-19 health and safety protocols have been fully integrated into the Hotel Resilient software, and we are supporting hotels during this crisis, by making the Hotel Resilient software and COVID-READY audit tool available for free. We congratulate the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities on their efforts and are honored to have been part of this wonderful team that has made Palestine a front runner in preparing their tourism industry for COVID-19 and safely welcoming back tourists.

Bijan Khazai

CEO, Hotel Resilient

About Jahzeen.ps (Jahzeen): Jahzeen.ps is Palestine’s tourism-readiness and resilience e-learning platform developed to fuse COVID prevention standards and protocols into everyday tourism business in Palestine. Its mission is to help enhance tourism sector employee’s skill sets by providing Jahzeen.ps users with learning tools and certification regarding the new standards and protocols necessary to implement a resilient tourism sector recovery. The Jahzeen e-Learning curriculum provides its users with access to information that includes a general introduction to COVID-19 as well as the new standards and protocols necessary to implement a successful recovery.