Residents and tourists queue to undergo nucleic acid tests for the Covid-19 coronavirus in Sanya in China's southern Hainan province on August 8, 2022. (Photo by AFP) / China OUT

After the outbreak of the corona virus on the tropical island of Hainan, lockdowns were imposed on four other places in addition to the holiday paradise of Sanya. State media named the cities of Wanning, Danzhou, Qionghai and Lingshui on Monday. Tens of thousands of Chinese tourists are stuck in “China’s Hawaii” as flights, trains and other public transport have been halted.

In less than a week, more than 1,100 infections were discovered on the southern Chinese island of ten million people, state media reported on Monday. One problem is the lack of test capacity, so the full extent is not yet known.

In Sanya alone, around 30,000 tourists are stuck in hotels, while around 50,000 others are staying in their vacation apartments.

Authorities ordered hotel prices for stranded tourists to be halved. However, the party-affiliated newspaper “Global Times” reported on “individual cases” where hotels refused the price reduction or had doubled the price without further ado. The authorities wanted to take care of the reported problems, it said.

As the rest of the world tries to live with the virus, China remains committed to a strict zero-Covid strategy to nip any outbreak in the bud. Individual infections are immediately responded to with curfews, mass testing, and other restrictions.