AP PHOTOS: Life in the 'bubble' at the Beijing Olympics

February 2, 2022 GMT

BEIJING (AP) — From the moment participants at the Beijing Olympics step off the plane, they enter the “bubble” — a system of strict containment measures that aims to keep the coronavirus at bay for the duration of the Games.

It all starts at the airport, where workers in full-body white suits lead athletes, their coaches and others through entry procedures, including the first of daily COVID-19 tests. Participants are only allowed to shuttle between Olympic venues and their accommodation, all on specially reserved buses. Everywhere workers spray disinfectant, while bubble residents track their temperature, stay alert for any symptoms and repeatedly test for the virus.

The goal? To keep those attending the Games completely separate from the wider Chinese population, all while keeping infections to a minimum inside the bubble.

At each hotel and venue, fences mark off a perimeter beyond which those inside the bubble cannot stray. Those inside peer out at a city they cannot visit. Those outside peer into an event they will experience only on television.


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