A representative of the European airline, Airlines for Europe (A4E), has called on EU governments to reject new travel restrictions and to maintain freedom of movement across the 27-nation bloc.
In a press release, A4E also responded to the European Union Commission’s decision to shorten the validity of vaccination certificates and require a third vaccination (booster shots) to be taken to maintain full vaccination status and, therefore, be able to travel across the 27-nation bloc, TheSchengen.com reports.
“The recommendation to shorten the validity of the vaccine certification to nine months and to require third doses (booster doses) to preserve this condition is premature and could jeopardize people’s ability to travel, given that many EU countries did not provide third doses for the majority of the population,” A4E revealed in a press release.
In addition, the authority welcomed the proposal of a recent update of the Council’s recommendation on inbound travel to the EU from third countries, in particular the decision to abolish the whitelist from March 2022. According to the authority, this change will improve the predictability of international travelers’ planning their trips by establishing rules Clear travel requirements.
However, continuing to implement ECDC’s color coding system does not align well with the authority of an airline representative. As the press release reveals, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), travel restrictions do not affect the spread of COVID-19 in Europe; Thus, the implementation of a color-coding system is not necessary and governments must impose entry rules based on the vaccination status of travelers.
Furthermore, the European Commission has proposed ending the color-coding system, starting on January 10, 2022. The ECDC’s weekly updated map currently only takes into account the number of COVID-19 cases, testing and death rates. The committee suggested that the CDC update the maps to include the effects of increased vaccination.
Recently, the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) stated that the situation for COVID-19 in the 27-nation bloc is worse than ever. Based on the latest statement, the European Health Agency showed that most EU member states – Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, half of Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Ireland, Iceland, Poland, Netherlands, Latvia, Lithuania, Greece, Hungary, Liechtenstein, Slovenia and Slovakia – Currently part of the dark red list.
The worst-hit countries remain in the Central European region, with Germany reporting 401,879 positive cases with COVID-19 in the past seven days, as well as Poland with 157,810, the Czech Republic with 131,731 and 96,444 in Austria.
In order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, vulnerable EU countries have introduced stricter rules with Austria ordering a national lockdown until December 19, as well as Slovakia entering a two-week emergency lockdown and Portugal requiring test evidence on entry even for fully vaccinated travelers.