WTTC Senior Vice President, Virginia Messina said: “We have been encouraged by the recent news of EU Member States welcoming back American visitors, the first step in the reopening of international travel and boosting economies. Travel from both the leisure and business standpoint contributed to $9.1BN total to the global GDP in 2019. Both segments must be allowed to restart to drive financial gains and recover job losses, and we are hopeful that other countries will follow this lead and safely reopen international travel particularly the UK.
“Allowing companies to resume business on the ground within key financial regions will be critical to the recovery. Work-related travel between the U.S. and U.K. alone accounted for more than $1.3BN to America’s economy in 2019 and as we begin to emerge from the pandemic, restoring mobility between these two top financial centers, will play a vital role in reviving international business and in turn economies. Likewise the summer is a major season for family vacations so we hope to see measures lifted to allow holidaymakers to visit their favourite destinations on the other side of the Atlantic.
“The current rate of vaccinations in the U.S. (nearly 47% fully vaccinated) and the U.K. (nearly 49% fully vaccinated) has led the push for governments on both sides of the Atlantic to re-establish the international travel corridor. Financial recovery for the remainder of 2021 and beyond rests on mobility being reinstated for leisure and business travelers.
“Now is the time for both the U.S. and the U.K. to take leadership by setting a new standard for safely traveling across borders, allowing companies and travelers to meet and explore in person on either side of the Atlantic.”