US travel ban will have detrimental implications on European and American tourism

The European Travel Commission (ETC), European Tourism Association (ETOA), United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA) and European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA) urge bilateral conversations between European and US authorities to review and cancel the travel suspension from Europe to the US.

US President Donald Trump announced a 30-day suspension of travel by non-US citizens from Europe’s Schengen Zone to the US. This is in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Trump said the European Union had ‘failed to take the same precautions’ as the US had implemented to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

Eduardo Santander, CEO of ETC said: “The coronavirus is a global crisis, not limited to any destination and it requires cooperation rather than unilateral action. Planes fly from A to B and B to A, the European tourism sector disapproves this unilateral travel ban without any consultation which will equally affect travel and tourism businesses and citizens at both sides of the Atlantic.”

“The President’s statement is puzzling,” said Tom Jenkins, CEO of ETOA. “Having downplayed the significance of the crisis – for which there is some argument – he then stigmatises an entire continent. This is a global crisis and we need global understanding. As it stands this move disproportionately damages inbound tourism to the US and punctures confidence in Europe as a destination. Fear is more damaging and spreads faster than a virus.”

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