Tourism groups push US to end travel restrictions
American air travel is already increasing. More than 1 million people have passed through each airport in the last 11 days, with Sunday totaling more than 1.5 million toppings for the first time in more than a year.
Airlines and other tourism-related businesses are pushing the White House to come up with a plan in the next five weeks to promote international travel and eliminate restrictions that were imposed early in the epidemic.
They want those who are exempt from immunization requirements against COVID-19 before entering the United States. They also want the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to say that vaccinated people can travel safely.The groups say those and other steps will accelerate the recovery of the travel and airline industries, which have been devastated by the decline in travel during the epidemic.
American air travel is already increasing. More than 1 million people have passed through each airport in the last 11 days, with Sunday totaling more than 1.5 million toppings for the first time in more than a year. Passenger traffic is still below 2019 levels.
Organizations that relaxed international sanctions include the country's largest carriers, airlines to the US, the US Travel Association, and the major trade groups of the US Chamber of Commerce. He set a May 1 goal for the government to "partner with us" on plans to revoke the one-year-old restrictions on international travel.
The groups cited recent cases of new cases, hospitals, and deaths related to COVID-19 in the United States. According to CDC data, approximately 45 million Americans, more than 13% of the population, have been fully immunized against COVID-19.
"It is time to plan and chart a defined roadmap to resume international travel," the White House virus-response coordinator Jeffrey Zeiters wrote in the letter.
The White House did not comment but referred to comments made by CDC director Rochelle Wallensky on Monday. Valensky said the health agency is working on new guidance for those who are vaccinated, but expressed concern about the recent increase in newly reported cases of coronovirus in several European countries.
"If we look at our European friends, we just don't want to be on top of matters again this fast, and it's very possible that it can happen," she said. "We are close to vaccinating so many people .Now is not the time to travel."The airline industry hopes to lift broader restrictions on travel between the United States and Europe, China and other regions that former President Donald Trump imposed last spring to stop the spread of the virus. Most non-US citizens who are in Europe are barred from entering the country.
Airlines are lobbying the Biden administration to take a lead role in developing standards for so-called vaccine passports that will allow people to be vaccinated and pass a test for COVID-19. The European Union proposed a digital health certificate last week, but the US administration demolished it, saying it was for the private sector.
In the past year, the federal government has approved $ 65 billion to help airlines cover most of their payroll costs in exchange for keeping workers employed, plus more billions in low-interest loans. Recently, President Joe Biden signed a $ 1.9 trillion relief package, which included $ 15 billion for airlines.