ASTA, Travel Advisors Welcome News of Europe Reopening
In a statement, president and CEO Zane Kerby noted that the timing was right.
“We are gratified that the EU has recognized the economic importance of a viable international travel system,” said Kerby. “Allowing Americans who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to visit Europe this the summer is welcome news at a time when Americans are planning overseas trips with their travel advisors.”
Kerby also noted that the U.S. government should also act to make it easier for citizens to return from overseas trips.
“As welcome as this announcement is, fulfilling its potential requires action on the part of the U.S. government,” he said. “Since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that fully vaccinated travelers are less likely to get and spread COVID-19, logic dictates that the rule requiring Americans returning from overseas to test negative for COVID-19 before boarding their return flight be revised to exempt those returning from the EU. Doing so will help the travel industry make the most of this development while protecting public health and reducing the risk of Americans stranded overseas at their own expense.”
Kerby pointed out that travelers should have options when returning home.
“We call on the CDC to modify its international air testing rule, and to continue work on systems to establish vaccination, immunity or a negative test result so that international travel can safely return to pre-pandemic levels,” he said.
Travel advisors welcomed the news that travel to Europe could open up, but many are holding off on bookings until official rules are in place before they launch into selling the destination for the summer.
“We have definitely seen inquiries for Europe over the last few months, but as an office VIP Vacations is not actively quoting Europe packages just yet,” said Ryan Doncsecz, groups manager at VIP Vacations. “Even with the rumors circulating of allowing entry to vaccinated U.S. citizens possibly this summer, VIP is waiting for the EU as a whole or for the specific countries themselves to make official updates before we take the time to dive into such an involved destination. Hoping for more possibly amazing news over the coming weeks.”
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