Windsor, Ont. –
As interest in travel is on the rebound, Canadians are being put on alert by one local traveller who doesn’t want others to go through what he and his wife did on their anniversary.
Marco Sperduti and his wife Elizabeth went to a resort in Negril, Jamaica in November to celebrate their 10th anniversary.
“We had a great time right up until the point they tried to imprison my wife,” Sperduti told CTV News.
Sperduti said he and and his wife were tested for COVID-19 at the resort and while his PCR test to return home was negative, his wife’s came back positive.
Concerned, he proceeded to visit the on-site nurses station.
“At which point I asked her, ‘Can I antigen again? Can Elizabeth PCR again?” Sperduti said.
He also offered to pay for a day pass to have an off-site nurse perform the test at no cost to the resort.
“It was a no to all those responses,” Sperduti said.
Elizabeth was told by resort staff she would have to stay an additional five days and more to an isolation wing of the hotel at a reduced rate.
Sperduti suggested his wife isolate in their current room because he was going home to take care of the kids.
He also happened to say he would book the room through his travel agent.
“I’m booking the room through her. ‘Well you need to book it through the hotel and recoup when you get home,’” he was told.
“The comment that they should be able to put it through their insurance is invalid,” travel insurance broker Martin Firestone said.
He says companies do offer coverage.
“(There’s) this product that will cover you in the event you do test positive and cannot return home,” he said.
Sperduti didn’t have that coverage, but his comments did appear to have the attention of management.
“Got a call from the manager saying ‘I think you might need to go down to the nurses’ station. You might have a false positive,” he said.
In a statement, Blue Diamond resorts where the couple was staying, would not comment on this specific case, but say they used a third party provider to administer tests. And upon identification of a positive case immediately execute COVID-19 protocols.
“Upon the identification of a positive case, Blue Diamond Resorts immediately executes the COVID-19 “Protocol to Prevent and Reach Suspected Coronavirus Cases”, and acts in compliance with the guidance of local health authorities and the Government of Jamaica,” the statement said.
Protocols that could cost travelers hundreds, dropped when Elizabeth’s test result was changed to negative.
Sperduti says travellers should be skeptical and know the rules before they leave.
“Ask for those resorts or travel companies to provide evidence of their regulations and rules they have to follow so that nefarious managers can’t take advantage of Canadians,” he said.