Twenty organisations involved in Europe’s travel and tourism sectors have called on European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to end compulsory quarantine restrictions.
The organisations, which represent more than 5,000 companies, want the system to be replaced by a European testing protocol for travel.
In an open letter addressed to Mrs. von der Leyen, they complained of “a chaotic situation” and referred to “the urgent need” for European coordination on travel advisories.
If a European testing protocol is adopted, quarantine restrictions could be eliminated for a large number of persons, the organisations noted. Such a protocol is crucial to enabling free circulation of persons, ending the current discrimination, and restoring single-market activity, they said.
Arguing that quarantines were not an effective way to fight the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), the organisations noted that the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control had advised States against imposing such restrictions since they were not based on actual risks and so were not effective.
They also noted that travel and tourism are the sectors hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis, which, they said, threatens the survival of many of their businesses and workers, who represent 27 million Europeans.
The open letter’s signatories included Frank Moreels, head of the European Federation of Transport Workers, along with umbrella organisations such as IATA (aeronautics), HOTREC (hospitality sector), ECA (pilots) and ACI Europe (airports).