The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has called on governments to move away from the concept of “red lists” and “high-risk countries”, replacing it with a risk assessment of specific travelers as they cross the border. Thus, it will be possible to remove a number of restrictions that are currently hindering the recovery of the tourism market.
An alternative approach will avoid the total isolation of all those entering from abroad, replacing them with only mandatory testing and wearing of masks for travelers.
“Acknowledging risk for entire states is neither effective nor productive. Instead, the risks for every traveler need to be rethought. This will be the key to safe international tourism, – said Gloria Guevara, Executive Director of the WTTC. “We need to learn from past experiences and crises like 9/11. We cannot continue to label entire countries as “high risk groups”, assuming everyone in them is infected. Just because the UK has a high infection rate does not mean that all Britons are infected; the same goes for all Americans, Spanish or French. The reality is much more complicated. This not only stigmatizes an entire nation, but also discourages travel, as many people who test negative on departure and arrival suffer from these restrictions. We firmly believe that the implementation of a comprehensive testing regime and the use of technology is the only practical way to safely recover international travel. Moreover, a comprehensive testing program will be cheaper than the costs of general quarantine and isolation. ”
The head of the WTTC also added that redistributing risks and introducing common hygiene protocols will allow travelers to move freely and avoid the spread of the virus before the first wave of vaccinations is completed.
The Council has previously advocated the introduction of comprehensive departure and arrival testing for all international travelers to prevent the spread of the virus.
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