China Announces Winter Olympics Tickets Will Not Be Sold To Public - Men's Health Magazine Australia

China Announces Winter Olympics Tickets Will Not Be Sold To Public

As China records its first locally transmitted case of Omicron, the Beijing Winter Olympics will now be off-limits to the general public in efforts to contain the spread.

As the world counts down until the Beijing Winter Olympic Games, we also find ourselves in familiar territory. Much like the Tokyo Summer Olympics, the threat of the global pandemic looms large over the entirety of the international sporting competition. Most didn’t anticipate that we would find ourselves in such a position. The myth we all wanted to believe and buy into was that 2021 would shuffle off its mortal coil and take Covid with it. But as the omicron variant of Covid continues to spread, Beijing is not taking precautions. 

It has been announced that tickets to the Winter Olympics in Beijing will not be available to the general public, but rather distributed to “targeted” groups. Following reports of Beijing’s first locally transmitted Omicron case over the weekend, China is now looking to control the spread of the highly-infectious variant. With the Games scheduled to start on 4 February, authorities are now facing increased pressure to contain it. 

As The Guardian reports, just last month North America’s national hockey league confirmed its players would not participate in the Beijing Winter Olympics due to Covid disruptions of the league schedule. 

Originally, organisers said the Games would be kept in a “closed loop,” with only a handful of spectators allowed in venues. It goes without saying that overseas spectators were not permitted to enter the country, and personnel involved in the Games had to quarantine, isolate and avoid interacting with those outside the loop, establishing something of a “bubble” system. 

Now, organisers have cited the “severe and complex” Covid-19 situation and the urgent need to protect the safety of Olympics personnel and spectators. An announcement from organisers read: “In order to protect the health and safety of Olympic-related personnel and spectators, it was decided to adjust the original plan to sell tickets to the public and [instead] organise spectators to watch the Games on site.”

Local spectators with tickets must now observe strict Covid prevention measures, both during and after attending the Olympic events. As well as this, authorities in China are trying desperately to contain the omicron variant, telling citizens not to order goods from overseas after it was claimed that a recent Omicron infection detected in Beijing had come from an international package sent from Canada. 

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