Formed of a group of more than 60 public and private travel and tourism organisations, the Europe Tourism Manifesto Alliance has unveiled a series of joint recommendations for EU member states on how to relaunch travel and tourism in time for summer 2021.
At the heart of the EU’s plans is the development of an EU roadmap for restoring travel once countries emerge from national lockdowns to be developed and implemented in close cooperation with industry and social partners.
The joint recommendations laid out by the European Tourism Manifesto alliance were shared with the EU government ahead of the crucial discussions.
A statement from the alliance read: “Our goal is for Europe to return to its place as the leading tourist destination in the world – and a safe one. As EU vaccination programmes progress and protect the most vulnerable citizens, we must jointly prepare for the restart of travel. There is simply no time to lose – preparations on a common approach should begin now, in order to restore public confidence by the summer. Our recommendations detail a joint way forward towards restoring travel & tourism and freedom of movement on behalf of European citizens. We look forward to working with EU leaders to put this plan into action as soon as possible.”
A summary of the recommendations to EU Member States includes:
- The creation of an EU Task Force to restore freedom of movement of people.
- Coordination of travel restrictions
- Testing: A harmonised EU framework for travel-related testing should encompass member states to ensure affordable testing, sufficient capacity, mutual recognition of tests between Member States and continuous work at international level for the mutual recognition of tests, as well as the validation of the use of antigen and other rapid tests for travel and tourism purposes.
- E-Health certificates: EU coordination of national initiatives is urgently needed too avoid having 27 different certificates covering testing, vaccination and/ or immunity.
- Coordinated reopening of tourism activities – once the health situation allows it, it is crucial to restart tourism and leisure activities alongside re-establishing freedom of movement for EU citizens.