Last Updated: July 17, 2020

Dear This Is Asia Tours Travelers,

We have responded to many individual inquiries regarding the Coronavirus / COVID-19, and as this is a rapidly changing situation, we continue working to address everyone’s concerns as quickly as possible.  Much of our communications thus far have been channelled through our group leaders, as will further updates, as we realize local governments and the international community are also weighing in on the feasibility of travel at this time.  As the situation unfolds, we hope that this page may serve as a resource for our travellers to know the risks, our preparedness, our cancellation terms and the impact of travel insurance.

Since our founding in 2010, the health and safety of our clients, travellers, and employees has been the number one priority at This Is Asia Tours. The community in Hong Kong together with our local experience have kept our travellers’ safe during numerous worldwide events such as the SARS outbreak 2003, and H1N1 outbreak in 2009 to name a few.

We are actively following the guidance of the Department of Health (Hong Kong Special Administrative Region), The Hong Kong SAR Government and the World Health Organization (WHO) to help ensure the actions we are taking are in line with the latest recommendations. We are also in close communication with our partners on the ground across Hong Kong, Macau and Shenzhen and around the world.

It is our policy that all our trips will run as planned, unless an official travel ban or pertinent geographic quarantine makes it unfeasible.  This is not to dismiss the risks or concerns, but it is a stance of careful readiness in response to current mandated travel restrictions, or rather the lack thereof.

Vendors across the world have increased their cleaning protocols in response to COVID-19. Public Transports and our Private Vehciles are being cleaned and sanitized nightly. Airlines have HEPA air filer systems installed on aircraft and have increased the frequency at which they are conducting deep cleaning of aircraft to nightly. Museums, restaurants, amusement parks and other attractions have added additional cleaning and sanitation measures. In our part of the world where we have been deeply hard hit by the SARS outbreak back in 2003, we have learnt our lessons and are taking these extra steps to sanitise public venues and as well as very good practice of personal hygrines in preventing any levels of contamination.

For continuing updates on the situation, please visit the Hong Kong Department of Health site: https://www.coronavirus.gov.hk/eng/index.html

Also specifically by the World Health Organisation, see:  https://www.who.int

 

We recently surveyed the travel industry to determine the health and safety precautions which are most important while on tour. We used this information, along with feedback from guides, and best practices provided by government health organizations, to create the following guidelines. We expect travelers and guides to follow them, to prioritize health and safety during the COVID-19 outbreak. They will be publicly displayed on our website.

 

Health & Safety Best Practices for All Tours: 

  • Do not go on tour if you, or someone with whom you have been in contact, are sick or are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms (such as cough, fever, shortness of breath). Travelers can take advantage of our Flexible Cancellation Policy if they need to cancel their tour at the last minute.
  • Avoid physical contact between guide and traveler; no hugs/handshakes for now.
  • Vehicles to be sanitized (interiors and door handles) before and after each tour.
  • Hand sanitizer, spare masks and wipes to be available at all times.
  • Wear masks while in enclosed spaces, like vehicles or museums.
  • Be aware of and respect local health and safety regulations and advisories.

 

 

We also expect guides and travelers to continue to embrace the “new normal” we’ve all become accustomed to: Wash/sanitize hands frequently; Cough or sneeze only into a closed elbow; Avoid shared items; Maintain physical distance between yourself and those outside your bubble.
In the context of Covid-19, it is also especially important for our guides to be extra prepared before each tour. We consider following these best practices to deliver tours as smoothly, safely, and enjoyably, as possible:

  • Message travelers prior to the date of the tour to confirm ground rules, to make them aware of local regulations and advisories, and to gauge their level of comfort with any associated risks.
  • Consider keeping the vehicle front passenger seat empty, to ensure physical distance between guide and traveler. This may be something we may want to discuss with travelers in advance.
  • Provide travelers with the information and time they will need to make any necessary preparations for the tour (e.g. arranging personal supplies such as water, food, sanitizer, masks, wipes).
  • Arrange meeting locations which allow for optimal physical distancing – for instance, open areas free from crowding.
  • Actively protect travelers from others who are not respecting their space or adhering to safety measures.
  • Plan routes and itineraries to avoid crowds and busy periods.
  • Schedule regular hand washing breaks.
  • Consider using a bluetooth mic while driving, so your voice can carry to the back of the vehicle, even when wearing a mask.
  • Be transparent with travelers if any of our guides have allergies, a persistent unrelated cough, etc.
  • Be generally over-cautious, be seen to be taking precautions seriously, and please do not downplay potential risks.

We hope that providing this reassurance to travelers will get us one step closer to returning to the “normal” all of our livelihoods depend upon.

 

 

Hong Kong Ongoing Unrests/New Hong Kong National Security Law

We understand your concern in regards to the ongoing protests news you have seen in Hong Kong since mid 2019. The situation now has eased as the violent parts of the protests are over in the mean time with the local Hong Kong government handling the situation of revealing in small parts a step at a time. Unveiling the truth of every stage of mixed conflicts since mid 2019. This is now an ongoing legal process within our justice system which will take long periods of time to resolve. In our modest opinion, as long as the local Hong Kong government are not initiating probes or announcements that will make the public angry, the people of Hong Kong will not be coming out on the streets to product an image that is not welcoming for our international guests.

The New National Security Law for Hong Kong the world has heard on the news lately, to put in a simpler context, we at This Is Asia Tours have never been involved with political matters nor discussed matters of the CCP during our tours operations. Our opinions are always modest focusing mostly on local histories and the story of Hong Kong. This new piece of law may seem as big deal in Hong Kong at this very stage, however it will not affect travellers coming to Hong Kong as long as we are nowhere near to a platform of subversion to the CCP. We understand there may be updated travel guidelines and advisories you’re your country, however our guides on our tours together with ours guests will handle our comments and actions in an appropriate manner in keeping us away from being involved with this new law.

At the same time, we here at This Is Asia are closely monitoring on news and social media together with our local knowledges, keeping an eye on the latest situation should anything escalates. We would definitely avoid any danger towards our guests and would place the best recommendations to avoid and as well as showing you the best of what we promised for our tours in showing you the true face of our local community, our cultures yet not missing out on the fundamentals of each of part of our cities, which we have successfully produced over the last half of 2019 with months of happy guests walking out of our tours. We are here to rest assure you there is no better than being with a local while travelling. Allowing you see Hong Kong like a local, be a local.

 

Flexible Cancellation Policy
Under normal circumstances, our team would seek confirmation from you before processing a customer-requested cancellation that is outside of your standard cancellation policy. Under the flexible cancellation policy, and to best assist you and reduce the volume of calls from our support teams to you, we will automatically cancel and fully refund all customer-requested cancellations. This policy will also apply to non-refundable bookings. Accordingly, we will not be making payment for these cancelled bookings. As the situation is constantly changing, we will ensure to keep you informed of any updates.  

 

Thank you for your continued trust and loyalty. Should you have additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly for your trip or any member of our team.

Sincerely,

This Is Asia Torus – Hong Kong Macau Shenzhen

Last updated: March 20th, 2020

Dear This Is Asia Tours Travelers,

We have responded to many individual inquiries regarding the Coronavirus / COVID-19, and as this is a rapidly changing situation, we will continue working to address everyone’s concerns as quickly as possible. Much of our communications thus far have been channelled through our group leaders, as will further updates, as we realize local governments and the international community are also weighing in on the feasibility of travel at this time. As the situation unfolds, we hope that this page may serve as a resource for our travelers to know the risks, our preparedness, our cancellation terms and the impact of travel insurance.

Since our founding in 2010, the health and safety of our clients, travelers, and employees have been the number one priority at This Is Asia Tours. The community in Hong Kong together with our local experience have kept our travelers’ safe during numerous worldwide events such as the SARS outbreak 2003, and H1N1 outbreak in 2009 to name a few.

We are actively following the guidance of the Department of Health (Hong Kong Special Administrative Region), The Hong Kong SAR Government, and the World Health Organization (WHO) to help ensure the actions we are taking are in line with the latest recommendations. We are also in close communication with our partners on the ground across Hong Kong, Macau, and Shenzhen and around the world.

It is our policy that all our trips will run as planned unless an official travel ban or pertinent geographic quarantine makes it unfeasible. This is not to dismiss the risks or concerns, but it is a stance of careful readiness in response to current mandated travel restrictions, or rather the lack thereof.

Vendors across the world have increased their cleaning protocols in response to COVID-19. Public transport and our private vehicles are being cleaned and sanitized nightly. Airlines have HEPA air filter systems installed on aircraft and have increased the frequency at which they are conducting deep cleaning of aircraft to nightly. Museums, restaurants, amusement parks and other attractions have added additional cleaning and sanitation measures. In our part of the world where we were deeply impacted by the SARS outbreak back in 2003, we have learned our lessons and are taking these extra steps to sanitize public venues, as well as very good practice of personal hygiene in preventing any levels of contamination.

For continuing updates on the situation, please visit the Hong Kong Department of Health site: https://www.coronavirus.gov.hk/eng/index.html
Also for information by the World Health Organization, see: https://www.who.int

Hong Kong Ongoing Unrest

We understand your concern in regards to the news of the ongoing protests you have seen in Hong Kong since mid-2019. The situation now has eased as the violent parts of the protests are over in the meantime with the local Hong Kong government handling the situation of revealing small steps at a time. Unveiling the truth of every stage of mixed conflicts since mid-2019. This is now an ongoing legal process within our justice system which will take long periods of time to resolve. In our modest opinion, as long as the local Hong Kong government is not initiating probes or announcements that will make the public angry, the people of Hong Kong will not be coming out on the streets to produce an image that is not welcoming for our international guests.

On the other hand, we here at This Is Asia are closely monitoring news and social media together with our local knowledge, keeping an eye on the latest situation should anything escalates. We would definitely avoid any danger towards our guests and putting in place the best recommendations. We show our guests the best of what we promised for our tours in showing the true face of our local community, our cultures yet not missing out on the fundamentals of each of part of our cities, which we have successfully produced over the last half of 2019 with many happy guests walking out of our tours. We are here to assure you there is no better way than being with a local while traveling. Allowing you to see Hong Kong like a local, and to become a local.

Flexible Cancellation Policy

Under normal circumstances, our team would seek confirmation from you before processing a customer-requested cancellation that is outside of your standard cancellation policy. Under the flexible cancellation policy, and to best assist you and reduce the volume of calls from our support teams to you, we will automatically cancel and fully refund all customer-requested cancellations. This policy will also apply to non-refundable bookings. Accordingly, we will not be making payment for these canceled bookings. As the situation is constantly changing, we will ensure to keep you informed of any updates.

Thank you for your continued trust and loyalty. Should you have additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly for your trip or any member of our team.

Sincerely,
This Is Asia Torus – Hong Kong Macau Shenzhen