Trade bodies representing the aviation sector have responded positively to the latest pandemic-end travel recommendations.
Airports Council International (ACI) EUROPE and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) welcomed the adoption of EU Council recommendations for external travellers coming to Europe and called for further help to re-start air connectivity.
The recommendations adopted in January further strengthen the principle of travel criteria based on travellers’ personal health rather than on the epidemiological situation of the country or area of departure. The World Health Organisation and independent third party research show that travel restrictions have little or no impact on epidemiological spread.
The recommendations state that:
- EU States should accept all travellers who are fully vaccinated with EU-approved vaccines without any restrictions or conditions.
- EU States should accept all travellers who are fully vaccinated with other WHO listed vaccines and recovered travellers either without restrictions or only with the requirement of a negative PCR test pre-departure.
- EU States could also accept fully vaccinated travellers not holding a valid EU DCC or equivalent, subject to a negative pre-departure PCR test.
While this is an undoubted step forward, the industry called for the EU to move towards an unconditional acceptance of all WHO-approved vaccines and replace PCR with rapid antigen testing options.
“As the safe resumption of air connectivity gathers pace, it is vital that member states implement this recommendation, bringing structure, predictability and harmonisation to the benefit of all,” said Olivier Jankovec, director general of ACI EUROPE.