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26 December 2019, 19:18

Belarus to change classification, requirements for inns, hotels, personnel

MINSK, 26 December (BelTA) – Requirements for hotels and inns and their personnel will be changed in Belarus, the press service of the State Standardization Committee of Belarus told BelTA.

The Belarusian State Institute for Standardization and Certification (BelGISS) has come up with a draft new state standard for hotel services. The draft document stipulates the requirements Belarusian hotels have to meet to get a certain number of points. The document applies to virtually all hospitality businesses except for rented residential premises, premises used for kids' recreation and leisure, premises used to provide social services. Healthcare institutions, camping sites, and halls of residence are also excepted.

At present Belarus uses a national standard based on recommendations of the World Tourism Organization. A lot of time has passed since the document was adopted. Many of the specified requirements are outmoded. It is time to develop a new standard to take into account modern trends, primarily telecommunications technologies. It is also necessary to get rid of outdated norms and services that visitors no longer need such as a stationary phone under an acoustic shade in the hall, a radio, envelops, pens, and writing paper in rooms.

The new document presents requirements depending on specific types of hotels and inns. For instance, hotels with up to 15 rooms will face one set of requirements while hotels with more rooms than that will encounter another set.

BelGISS representatives explained that sometimes a small hotel with modern interior design, good amenities in rooms, and welcoming personnel could get four or five stars but right now it needs to offer a large number of services to get these stars. For instance, a hotel with 15 rooms at most is unlikely to have a spa or a conference hall. The new differentiated approach will allow more hotels to be properly appreciated.

At present Belarusian hotels can go through a voluntary certification process to get one to five stars while inns are limited to one to four stars. As many as 55 hotels and inns have been certified. The list is available on the dedicated website Certified Hotels in Belarus.

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