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Is It Safe to Travel to Europe Now Due to War in Ukraine? Experts Say It Is

Two years after the outbreak of the Corona virus, the travel and tourism sector in Europe is finally starting to rise again. With the majority of EU member states scrapping most travel restrictions, the sector has been eagerly awaiting the summer season, beginning preparations earlier than ever.

However, since the Russian military began its invasion of Ukraine on February 24, many fear the impact of the ongoing war on the continent’s already devastated travel sector.

While one might argue that the travel and tourism sector is not something one should worry about, while people die every day in Ukraine, the immigration experts at TheSchengen.com think differently.

“More than two million people from Ukraine arrived in EU countries only during the first two weeks of the invasion. While the United Nations expects the number to rise to four million by June, we believe this will happen much earlier,” the experts emphasize before making their point.

According to them, EU countries need to be economically strong in order to be able to support incoming refugees.

Due to the pandemic, many workers in the sector have been laid off. Once the tourism sector fully recovers, not only will these workers return to work, but there will also be new workplaces for refugees, so they can work, while waiting for the war to end. Look at Greece, it has already announced that there are 50,000 jobs available for Ukrainians arriving in the country, ”they confirm.

>> Greece opens 50,000 jobs in the tourism sector for Greek expats and Ukrainian refugees

The same claim that at present, there is no reason to cancel or postpone EU travel plans, noting that the EU countries themselves have not issued any travel warning against non-essential trips to other EU countries. The only travel warnings in effect due to the war are for Ukraine, Russia and Belarus, and none of these three is a member of the European Union.

‘It is absolutely safe to travel to Europe now’

Unfortunately, the neighboring countries of Ukraine will, without a doubt, be affected by the war when it comes to tourism. According to data revealed by ForwardKeys, the first week of the invasion saw the biggest drops in flight bookings in Bulgaria, Georgia, Hungary and Poland, between 30 and 50 percent.

A survey by MMGY Travel Intelligence found that 62 percent of Americans listed the war in Ukraine spilling over into neighboring countries as a concern for travel to the European Union.

Regarding safety concerns for travel to the European Union, Senior Vice President of Global Intelligence for Crisis Response and Risk Management, Crisis24, Mike Susung, told AFAR that there are no grounds for concern about the safety of travel in the European Union due to the distance between the war zone and from the most-visited EU countries.

Brussels, Belgium 1300 km [800 miles] From Lviv, Ukraine,” he says, explaining his point of view.

While the air distance between Ukraine and some other major destinations for Americans and British, such as Spain, Portugal and Italy, is much greater.

Moreover, the majority of airlines did not make any changes regarding their flight paths, although some of them that used Russian airspace to connect a third country to Europe had to adjust their air travel itineraries. However, this move did not affect the passengers in any case, apart from the length of the flight in the air a little.

>> These are the airlines most affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine

The chances of the Russian authorities moving towards attacking another country are very slim. In particular, since attacking one of the EU countries means having to deal with the entire EU and its armies, as well as with NATO, since a large number of EU countries are also part of NATO.

‘You have to be careful’

However, experts advise travelers to take the necessary measures wherever and whenever they travel in Europe.

“If you go ahead with your travel plans, I advise doing so with a great deal of caution. Make sure you keep abreast of any changes in threat dynamics that could affect personal safety and the ability to move about freely,” says Greg Pearson, CEO of Risk Management. Focus Point International, in The Washington Post.

One way to be careful is also to buy the right travel insurance. In particular, travelers who wish to pre-book their flights are advised to purchase insurance that will cover them in the event of a flight cancellation.

Some travel insurance companies now offer the option to purchase “cancel for any reason” travel insurance plans, which allow a person to cancel a trip and get all their money back, without having to provide a good reason for doing so.

“If you fear that the situation will deteriorate and as a result you will need to cancel your plans and lose your money, you should get a ‘cancellation for any reason’ travel insurance plan. These plans will enable you to wait for your vacation without worrying about what will happen to your money, in case you need to cancel plans. your travels, for whatever reason,” noted travel insurance experts from TheSchengen.com.

Travel medical insurance policies for travel to Europe can be purchased online directly at the AXA, MondialCare or Europ Assistance website.

>> Americans eager to carry out their EU travel plans despite the war in Ukraine

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Source: schengenvisainfo.com

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