Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for accommodation providers

Guidance and advice for those providing hotel and other accommodation in England.

On 23 June 2020, the Prime Minister announced further easements of the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions as part of Step Three of the government’s plan to return life to as near normal as we can. The advice below is not relevant to any area under a local lockdown.

From 4 July, people can stay overnight away from home with their own household or support bubble, or with members of one other household. People should not stay overnight away from their home with members of more than one other household.

All guest accommodation providers can reopen from 4 July. This guidance for Hotels and Other Guest Accommodation sets out how to open businesses safely while minimising the risk of spreading coronavirus (COVID-19). Accommodation providers may also need to refer to guidance for Restaurants, Pubs, Bars and Takeaway Services, guidance for Small Marriages and Civil Partnerships, and guidance for Outdoor Playgrounds and Gyms, depending on the facilities and services available at their sites.

Accommodation providers should make themselves aware of any facilities and services not currently allowed to reopen.

Hotels can host meetings of up to 30 people indoors if social distancing can be maintained and the venue can demonstrate it has followed the COVID-19 guidance.

Where hotels have large grounds, these can be made available to the public as long as guidance on accessing green spaces safely is followed.

Employers and employees can read guidance on how to play their part in the NHS test and trace programme to slow the spread of the virus, protect the health and care system and save lives. The service ensures that anyone who develops symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) can quickly be tested to find out if they have the virus, and helps trace close recent contacts of anyone who tests positive for coronavirus - if necessary notifying them that they should self-isolate at home to help stop the spread of the virus.

Guidance on guests self-isolating as required by law

Certain individuals travelling from overseas will be required by law to self-isolate for a period of 14 days. Businesses providing holiday accommodation can provide rooms to those required to self-isolate. Accommodation for these purposes should adhere to the same guidelines as for other permitted stays, including on social distancing and cleaning.

People staying in accommodation that have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19)

If a guest is displaying signs of the coronavirus (COVID-19) virus while staying in overnight accommodation for a permitted reason, they should inform the accommodation provider, immediately self-isolate where they are to minimise any risk of transmission, and request a test. If they are confirmed to have coronavirus (COVID-19), they should return home if they reasonably can. They should use private transport but only drive themselves if they can do so safely. If a guest cannot reasonably return home (for example because they are not well enough to travel or do not have the means to arrange transport), their circumstances should be discussed with an appropriate health care professional and, if necessary, the local authority.

The accommodation provider and guest should discuss next steps as soon as possible. If the guest is unable to return home, the accommodation provider and guest should discuss meal and laundry provision, and accommodation providers should consider whether symptomatic guests should clean their own rooms and strip their own beds.

Unless otherwise provided for in the contractual terms of the booking, the guest will be expected to pay the costs of an extended stay in all but exceptional circumstances. Exceptional circumstances may include but are not limited to where the accommodation provider has failed to follow government guidance to create a covid-secure environment.

There will be some types of accommodation where self-isolation would not be possible, for example if there are shared washing facilities or if the risk to the host, owner or staff cannot be mitigated. In these cases, guests should make arrangements to travel home as safely as possible, whilst minimising risk to others.

Accommodation providers should consider how best to inform guests about their policy for Covid-symptomatic guests, for example during the booking or check-in process.

Guests should follow government guidance on dealing with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection. Once the guest (and if appropriate their family) has finished the required self-isolation period and is no longer symptomatic, they should return to their main residence and continue to follow the government guidance on self-isolation, household isolation and social distancing.

Published 24 March 2020
Last updated 7 July 2020 + show all updates
  1. Updated with changes from 4 July 2020.

  2. Guidance updated

  3. First published.