Canada Association of Tourism Employees

UK: Tourism Restart Solely Potential with Governmental Assurance

The mighty UK tourism industry is asking the government for more security in planning to restart international travel. Although Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement, who confirmed on April 5 that travel can begin May 17, was well received, the industry believes the information provided is insufficient.

Mark Tanzer, chairman of the board of the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA), says tourism will only restart if “a more stable system avoids last summer’s situation where travel to many destinations was quickly turned on and off” created.

After multiple outbreaks, the Johnson government vetoes against targets overnight and plunged the industry into chaos. This policy has dashed the few hopes of a rescue last summer season and wreaked havoc on the already ailing tourism industry. Mass cancellations were reported in all companies.

ABTA believes it is “important” for the UK government to “clarify how the transition between green, amber and red works to help travel companies plan ahead and keep travelers safe. Targets shouldn’t be closed suddenly, “said Tanzer.

The travel association claims that unrestricted travel to ‘green’ destinations (with low levels of COVID-19 infections) should be possible: “Currently, the cost of testing can be daunting for many UK travelers, so the government needs to ensure testing is done only if that Public health risk justifies this and an inexpensive and efficient testing system is in place. “

An IATA report found that a family of four traveling to the Canary Islands from the UK would have to take 16 PCR tests, which cost £ 1,600 or € 1,850. The total is 160% more than the price of the four plane tickets, so the test requirement completely changes the investment required for the trip.

UK tourism lost a total of $ 203 billion in 2020 due to the pandemic. According to a study by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), the sector’s contribution to GDP declined by 62.3% from $ 327 billion (10.1%) in 2019 to just $ 123 billion (4.2%) back in 2020. The much-needed restart in tourism is expected to help those who have lost their jobs. Last year, the restrictions resulted in the loss of 307,000 industry jobs across the country. The picture could be much worse if it weren’t for the government’s tax and liquidity incentives, as well as the OSH and licensing processes that currently protect more than 11 million jobs across all sectors, costing about $ 63 billion to the public purse.

The report also found that domestic visitor spending fell 63.2% due to national blockades, while international spending was even worse due to tight travel restrictions, quarantines, and ever-changing government policies, resulting in a 71.6% decrease.

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