As key contributors to the travel and tourism ecosystem, eu travel tech members have experienced first-hand the impact of COVID-19 on the European travel industry. Our members are still dealing with its severe consequences: the OECD predicts a decline of the global tourism economy by 45%-70% in 2020. WTTC estimates that 75 million jobs related to tourism and travel are at risk worldwide, 27 million being in Europe.
The adoption of the Tourism and Transport package by the European Commission is vital for the restart of the European tourism sector in the medium to long term. The Commission’s common and coordinated approach to lift blanket restrictions and restore free movement at EU internal borders, and transport services, and the recommendations to develop health protocols for hospitality establishments are timely and conducive to resume travel and tourism in a safe way.
As we move forward, the critical next step is to identify and implement the most effective instruments for the economic recovery and the green transition of the sector. EU policymakers, Member States and industry need to work together to find solutions that put travel and tourism at the center of the recovery plans, stimulate demand, restore consumer confidence and support the shift towards a more sustainable sector. In order for Europe to continue benefiting from a diverse tourism marketplace, these policies will have to support the whole travel ecosystem, including travel agents (online and offline), technology solutions providers such as global distribution systems, travel platforms for accommodation, metasearch and travel management companies.
Read our position paper below.