By Ron Howells • 20 September 2021 • 23:14
Fully vaccinated Europeans will be able to travel to the US from November
Fully vaccinated Europeans will be able to travel to the US from November as restrictions are eased.
Fully vaccinated foreign travellers will be allowed to fly into the US from November if they agree to undergo testing and contact tracing. The move answers a major demand from European allies and means that families and friends separated by the restrictions can now be reunited.
White House Covid-19 coordinator Jeff Zients announced the new rules on Monday, September 20, saying: “This is based on individuals rather than a country-based approach, so it’s a stronger system. Most importantly, foreign nationals flying to the US will be required to be fully vaccinated,” he said.
Airlines UK- ‘Major breakthrough
“This is a major breakthrough which coupled with the removal of travel restrictions announced last week represents a substantial reopening of UK aviation.
“The US is one of our most important markets and the air corridor is worth billions of pounds a year in trade and tourism – safeguarding thousands of jobs. Things are moving in the right direction and ministers deserve credit for getting us to this point. We look forward to seeing the full details so airlines can support seamless implementation in November.”
“Obviously, there is more to be done – including the relaxation in due course of restrictions for unvaccinated passengers – but for now there is light at the end of the tunnel following 18 months of unprecedented uncertainty,” said Tim Alderslade, chief executive of Airlines UK.
Abta- ‘Great news’
“The news that double-vaccinated travellers will be allowed to travel to the US from the UK from November is great news for holidaymakers, business travellers and those who have been separated from friends and family for so long.
“The USA is by far our most popular long-haul destination and in a normal year attracts almost five million visitors from the UK. The announcement will come in time to allow people to, among other things, take the ever-popular Christmas shopping trips to New York and is a very welcome boost for the winter sports market whose customers love the country’s high-quality ski resorts,” said An Abta spokesperson.
The Business Travel Association ‘Must be permanent’
Clive Wratten, chief executive of the Business Travel Association, welcomed the move, but questioned the need to wait until November and said the reopening “must be permanent”.
He said: “The re-opening of international travel between the UK and the US is long overdue. Today’s reported announcement from President Biden gives the whole travel industry light at the end of a very dark tunnel.
“We have been calling for this for many months. Waiting until November harms businesses on both sides of the Atlantic. Once travel between the two countries resumes, it must be on a permanent basis.”
Scottish Passenger Agents’ Association- ‘Huge boost’
“America is one of the most significant markets for Scottish travel agents, so news that double vaccinated Scots will soon be able to travel to the USA once again for business, visiting friends and family and for holidays is a huge boost.
“More than 1.4 million travellers to Orlando each year are from Britain and, along with Florida, New York and Las Vegas are key destinations from Scotland. Pre-pandemic, there were around six flights daily from Glasgow and Edinburgh direct to the States, so the importance of this move for the whole Scottish travel sector and the 26,000 jobs it sustains, can’t be underestimated.
“Of course, we await the finer details of which vaccinations will be accepted and will qualify for entry and also the confirmation that this will apply to Scotland, but this is certainly a very important change to travel rules. This could also be the saviour for inbound travel to Scotland and the high spending American visitors it brings,” said Joanne Dooey, SPAA president.
The US has had tough restrictions on travel in place since early last year.
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Ron actually started his working career as an Ophthalmic Technician- things changed when, during a band rehearsal, his amplifier blew up and he couldn’t get it fixed so he took a course at Birmingham University and ended up doing a degree course. He built up a chain of electronics stores and sold them as a franchise over 35 years ago. After five years touring the world Ron decided to move to Spain with his wife and son, a place they had visited over the years, and only bought the villa they live in because it has a guitar-shaped swimming pool!.
Playing the guitar since the age of 7, he can often be seen, (and heard!) at beach bars and clubs along the length of the coast. He has always been interested in the news and constantly thrives to present his articles in an interesting and engaging way.
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