IATA, WTTC applaud U.S. decision to reopen to fully vaccinated travellers

IATA, WTTC applaud U.S. decision to reopen to fully vaccinated travellers

GENEVA — Both IATA and the WTTC are expressing support for the Biden administration’s decision to begin reopening the U.S. to fully vaccinated travellers.

As reported yesterday, the U.S. plans to begin reopening its borders to fully vaccinated foreign nationals starting in November.

All international travellers flying to the U.S. will need to demonstrate proof of vaccination before boarding, as well as proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within three days of flight.

Fully vaccinated passengers will not be required to quarantine. The U.S. will also require airlines to collect contact information from international travellers to facilitate contact tracing.

Yesterday’s announcement from the Biden administration “is a major step forward,” said IATA’s Director General, Willie Walsh.

“Allowing access to the U.S. for those vaccinated will open travel to the U.S. for many who have been locked out for the past 18 months. This is excellent news for families and loved ones who have suffered through the heartache and loneliness of separation. It’s good for the millions of livelihoods in the US that depend on global tourism. And it will boost the economic recovery by enabling some key business travel markets,” he added.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “The U.S. lifting travel restrictions to restore transatlantic travel between the EU and the UK is welcome news – not only for hard-pressed airlines, but for the wider travel and tourism sector, which has been decimated by COVID-19.”

Visitors from the EU to the U.S contributed more than $35 billion to the economy in 2019, and UK visitors more than $11 billion, she notes.

Simpson added that the WTTC “strongly advocates for fully vaccinated citizens to be able to travel freely and safely, irrespective of where they’re travelling from.”