OYO has reached out to embassies of over 15 countries to accommodate foreign nationals stranded in India amid the coronavirus crisis and the ongoing lockdown.
OYO has also taken steps to provide support to frontline medical staff, aircrew, corporates, tourists, paying guests, among others who need accommodation.
“Reaching out to 15+ embassies, the company aims to support the Ministry of Tourism in efforts to secure shelter for all travellers in need across the country,” the company said in a statement.
As part of the outreach, OYO is in touch with over 15 diplomatic missions in India and has already helped stranded foreign tourists from the US, Brazil, Belgium, Portugal, Australia, Chile, Argentina and Indonesia in availing accommodation during the nationwide lockdown in OYO properties across tier 1 and tier 2-3 cities in India.
The cities include Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Rishikesh, Pondicherry, Ranchi, Hyderabad, Jodhpur, and Jalandhar, it said.
The company has set up a swift response team to understand requirements of the stranded tourists, initiated contact with embassies, guests and the Ministry of Tourism and identified hotels that can be of service in this hour of need. The company has also been providing regular updates to said embassies on the well-being of the foreign nationals.
Ritesh Agarwal, Founder and Group CEO, OYO Hotels & Homes, said: “These are testing times for the world and we at OYO too have been deeply impacted by COVID-19. Both revenues and occupancies have dropped. Our commitment to the community at large remains, however, remains unflinched and we want to do everything possible to ensure we can provide reliable accommodation to persons stranded.
“As a hotel chain, it is our responsibility to demonstrate aAtithi Devo Bhava’ during these testing times. We are grateful for the efforts of each and every professional whose role requires them to be at the forefront of India’s fight against COVID-19 and we want to do our bit in this fight,” he added.
Commenting on this development, Gustavo Westmann, Head of the Trade and Investment Office, Embassy of Brazil to India said: “I am pleased to highlight that OYO has been a great partner of the Brazilian Embassy in this period of global crisis. By having one of the largest networks of hotels in the country, the team of OYO has been able to provide solutions to Brazilian citizens with different budgets, in different locations around the country, with professionalism and a great commitment to social responsibility.
OYO further said that its employees across the globe have also come together to set up an OYO Welfare Fund, proceeds of which will be used for the benefit and welfare of the employees at OYO properties, asset partners and their staff members in impacted situations such as the COVID-19 pandemic or the consequent restrictions.
This fund will also be used for the welfare of the community at large when faced with difficult situations in the long run, it added.