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Thu, 10 June 2021

IATA Praises France and Spain for Opening Borders to Vaccinated Travellers

IATA has welcomed the relaxation of COVID19 border measures for vaccinated passengers, and the broader use of affordable antigen testing adopted by Spain and France this week.

Spain opened its borders on 7 June to most vaccinated travelers from around the world and allowed EU travelers to enter the country with a negative antigen test. Furthermore, passengers coming from low-risk countries (including the UK) can enter without any restrictions.

On 9 June, France opened to vaccinated travelers from all but those countries assessed as high risk. Vaccinated travelers from medium-risk countries will need to provide proof of a negative COVID19 antigen or PCR test, and unvaccinated people must still self-isolate for seven days.

Iberia Airbus A330 reg: EC-LYF. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.

Its encouraging to see more European countries taking steps to reopen borders. They recognize the opportunity created by vaccination and are making travel more affordable with the use of antigen testing, said Willie Walsh, IATAs Director General. But this approach is not universal across the continent. Many European states have yet to significantly relax borders at all. This fragmentation should be replaced with a unified approach that is consistent with the recommendations of the EU to which they belong. People, businesses and economies would all benefit from greater alignment across Europe in relaxing measures and restoring the freedom to travel.

A consistent approach across Europe is required if the EU Digital COVID Certificate is to be implemented effectively by 1 July.

Around the world, governments need to allow digital certificates to be integrated in passenger applications such as IATA Travel Pass, in order to relieve pressure on airports and at borders from more complex passenger processing as the number of travelers ramps up.

Connectivity needs countries at both ends of the journey to be open, said Walsh. Many of the worlds largest air travel markets, such Australia, China, the UK, Japan, and Canada remain essentially closed with no clear plans to guide a reopening. Data should help these and other countries to introduce targeted policies that keep populations safe while moving towards a normality in world with COVID19 for some time to come. The G7 has an opportunity later this month to set a risk-managed framework for re-establishing the freedom to travel in a way that is both affordable and practical. Its critical that they take up the challenge.

See also: What is the IATA Travel Pass, and what does it mean for travellers, airlines and the global travel industry? Exclusive video interview with Vinoop Goel.

See latest Travel Industry News, Video Interviews, Podcasts and other news regarding: IATA, Quarantine, France, Spain.

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