UNTWO launches United for Travel campaign

The Global Tourism Crisis Committee of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), is advancing solid plans to restart tourism. It believes the integration of vaccines into a harmonised digital approach to safe travel will boost confidence in the sector.

With countries around the world rolling out vaccines against the COVID-19 virus, UNWTO believes there is now a critical window in the fight against the pandemic and an opportunity to promote the safe resumption of international travel.

The organisation states that the rollout of vaccines is a step in the right direction, but the restart of tourism cannot wait. Vaccines must be part of a wider, coordinated approach that includes certificates and passes for safe cross-border travel.

UNWTO believes the key is to step up coordination, within the framework of the International Health Regulations, of vaccination certificates to ensure the implementation of common, harmonised digital related travel principles, protocols and documents. This would also be in line with the work being carried out by the World Health Organization, which has reported on potential applications of digital technology to enable safe international travel.

UNWTO suggests that their United for Travel campaign will help achieve this, providing a clear and strong message that safe tourism is now possible.

The Crisis Committee is working to ensure measures are implemented, including by governments, to foster their application at every level of tourism. The committee called for support of the OECD’s own initiative aimed at developing a harmonised system of border controls. This would be developed in coordination with UNWTO as well as with the WHO and, representing the civil aviation and the maritime sectors respectively, ICAO and the IMO.

Countries need to ensure that measures affecting international traffic are risk-based, evidence-based, coherent, proportionate and time limited.