Tourists arrive at Jeju International Airport, Friday, a day before the Chuseok holiday officially begins. Yonhap
By Jun Ji-hye
Jeju Island authorities are staying vigilant over an inflow of tourists as well as people visiting their families on the resort island during the Chuseok holiday that begins Saturday and runs through Wednesday.
Concern is growing as the island has seen a decreasing tread in COVID-19 infections in recent days, following the Jeju Special Self-Governing Province’s decision to impose Level 4 restrictions, the highest in the country’s four-tier social distancing plan, in the region.
Level 4 bans private gatherings of three or more people after 6 p.m. and the operation of entertainment establishments, including nightclubs and bars. Twelve designated beaches on the island were shut down as well.
The inflow of people from other regions, especially those from the Seoul metropolitan area that has reported the largest number of new daily cases for months, during the holiday is raising fears that virus cases on the island could surge again at any time.
According to the Jeju Tourism Association, 200,000 people are expected to travel to the island for a vacation or family visit from Friday to next Wednesday during one of the country’s biggest annual holidays.
The association originally expected about 215,000 people to visit the island during the six-day period, but lowered the estimation, considering the influence of Typhoon Chanthu that forced some flights and ferries to the island to be canceled.
Amid mounting concern over the possible spread of infections, acting Jeju Governor Koo Man-seop said, “We strongly advise people to go through COVID-19 testing before visiting Jeju.”
He stressed that the island can claim the right to indemnity for expenses, if a person who has not gone through testing before coming to the island is confirmed positive for the coronavirus and causes serious damage to the island’s antivirus efforts.Internet Explorer Channel Network