COVID-19: Edmonton airport hotel owner open to welcoming sunny travelers for quarantine

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The owner of the Edmonton airport hotel says he’s open to quarantining sunny travelers if asked by the federal government.

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International passengers entering Canada must book a government-approved hotel for three nights at their own expense and pass a molecular test following the new measures announced on Friday. In addition, travelers returning from outside the country will be directed to airports in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary starting February 3. Flights from Mexico and Caribbean countries were also suspended until April 30.

The new measures aim to limit the spread of COVID-19 and variants of the virus in Canada.

Rahim Meghji, the owner of the Renaissance Edmonton Airport Hotel, said on Sunday that it would be open to be a hotel approved to be used for quarantine, but felt the likelihood of that happening was very low, as the city didn’t is not one of the four airports serving international travelers.

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“We would be open until we are 100% a quarantine hotel, because we have our usual business that we need to take care of,” Meghji said. “We can separate an entrance, an elevator and all that. We can do this stuff as long as it doesn’t get in the way of the normal ebb and flow of business.

He said the hotel already has a quarantine plan in place for guests who wish to self-isolate, such as designating an entire floor.

Meghji said the airport hotel was doing a bit better than most hotels, thanks to freight flights, which brought the occupancy rate to around 20%.

In Friday’s announcement, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the cost for travelers staying in government-supervised hotels would be $ 2,000 per person.

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Meghji said he did not know where the government got this amount from.

“I don’t know of any hotel in Edmonton that charges $ 500 a night, right now,” he said.

Meanwhile, Alberta reported 461 new cases of the virus on Sunday, bringing the total number of active cases to 7,505. Eight more people have died from the virus, bringing the death toll in the province to 1,639. country, there have been more than 20,000 deaths.

While the majority of cases remain in the Edmonton and Calgary areas with 2,475 and 3,026, respectively, Alberta’s larger metropolitan areas were the only ones to report declines on Sunday. The central zone with 700, the south zone with 334, and the north zone with 947 all saw increases.

There are currently 561 people hospitalized, including 101 in intensive care.

More than 8,900 tests were done on Saturday and about 115,060 Albertans have recovered. There were 106,254 doses of vaccine administered on Saturday.

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