Stranded tourists in China resort island see hope after protests
08/15/2022|2:27:35 PM|Bloomberg

Thousands of tourists stranded for days due to Covid lockdowns on the Chinese resort island of Hainan got a glimmer of hope Sunday as authorities signaled they could soon return home, but only after local approvals.

Provincial authorities announced that commercial flights for domestic passengers out of Sanya, a popular tourist spot on Hainan’s southern tip, would begin their orderly resumption Monday, according to a statement on the city’s WeChat account. However, travelers can fly out provided there are no new cases in their tour groups and hotels within the last seven days.

For the visitors who have been stuck in Hainan for more than a week, Sunday’s official statements were the clearest yet that offered clues as to when they could leave the island. Lack of information and clarity earlier had led to frustration, with more than a hundred vacationers at the Wyndham Hotel and the Marriott Yalong Bay protesting, according to a video shared by a guest. 

In early guidelines announced Sunday, authorities said those in Covid-free areas who don’t have symptoms such as fever, cough, loss of smell or muscle pain in the past three days could return after testing negative twice in 48 hours. In low-risk areas, they could return after testing negative three times in 72 hours.

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