European Tourism Associations Urge EU to Apply COVID-19 Testing Instead of Quarantine

European Travel Commission (ETC), as well as other 20 travel and tourism associations, have urged the European Commission to implement a testing process for persons upon their arrival to European countries, instead of imposing quarantine rules.

Over 20 travel and tourism bodies have addressed a joint open letter to the European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, calling on the European Commission to change the current Coronavirus travel restrictions, which so far have resulted in an ongoing decrease in the air passenger traffic VisaGuide.World reports.

More than 27 million persons risk losing their jobs, due to the current travel restrictions imposed by a large share of European countries in an effort to prevent the further spread of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Over 5,000 companies’ members have complained that the current travel restrictions are affecting their business directly pointing out that something needs to be done immediately, in this regard.

 “European travel and tourism have suffered a devastating blow from the coronavirus crisis due to insufficiently coordinated border restrictions, declining traveller confidence and reduced consumer demand. The industry simply cannot afford to have a similar fragmented picture with inconsistent and constantly changing national approaches for the upcoming autumn and winter seasons. The freedom of movement and millions of livelihoods in Europe are at stake today, and the European Commission has to lead the way to restore travel in the EU,” the President of the European Travel Commission, Luís Araújo said.

A report published earlier by ACI EUROPE stressed that there was noted a decline in arrivals at the European airports, during the first two weeks of this month.

In the first two weeks of September, there was a 73 per cent decline in Europe’s passenger traffic marked, compared to the 65 per cent decrease observed in mid-August.

We are thus urging you to make this issue a top priority and calling on you to address this issue directly with Heads of State, and Government…We are therefore also urging you to ensure that the Commission takes the lead in the development of an EU Testing Protocol for travel and its implementation to avoid quarantines and re-open borders,” the letter stressed.

Last month, airlines and airports urged European governments to accept the negative results of COVID-19 test instead of imposing quarantine rules for passengers, upon their arrival.

Earlier this month, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) also urged European governments to abolish border restrictions in order to revive the economic sector, which has been profoundly affected by the Coronavirus outbreak.

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