USA Contemplate Opening to Vacationers in Could
The US Travel Association is lobbying in Washington DC and the first reports of an opening to tourists as early as May are making the rounds. Experts are still skeptical – but assume that the USA will also closely link the opening with the vaccination situation.
The US news portal CNBC reports with reference to insiders from Washington that an opening “from mid-May” is being considered. In particular, the aim is to open the land borders with Mexico and Canada, but also to accept participants from Europe (EU, EFTA, Great Britain) again. For the time being, the borders will remain permanently closed until at least April 21st.
There is still no official government protocol on opening it to tourists. So far it has become known that vaccination status – both within the US and in the traveler’s country of origin – will play a key role. According to the memo, one of the opening conditions would be virtually full vaccination coverage for the US population, with free access to vaccines until mid-May. That is optimistic to say the least. In addition, this means that, in the event of a reopening, several “government agencies” would have to be involved in drawing up any entry requirements. Why the timeframe of less than two months mentioned by CNBC – and given the fact that the corona numbers are rising again in various countries and the USA is currently struggling with spring breakers who are neglecting covid measures and thus possibly fueling new superspreader events ‘An opening before summer is hardly to be expected. In short, the matter is raised, but so far without any specific details.
In the meantime, lobbying in favor of the domestic travel industry is in full swing. Not only are the major US airlines calling for an end to the lockdown, but also the thousands of companies that have been massively affected by the absence of foreign guests. As the US Travel Association (USTA) calculated last week with the help of the research institute “Tourism Economics”, US tourism revenue fell from $ 2.6 trillion to $ 1.5 trillion in one year, a decrease of 42 percent – and that despite relatively solid domestic tourism.
A total of 5.6 million jobs were lost in the USA. USTA was able to solve the problems directly with representatives from Washington last week. For USTA President / CEO Roger Dow, the key message was: “The travel industry is suffering disproportionately from overall losses due to the pandemic. Now it is all the more important that policymakers understand that the recovery of the economy at the national level is very closely linked to recovery of travel and the entire travel industry. “