Even as the thickness of travel restrictions increases across Europe, the European Union is seeking support for a coordinated regional approach that will make it easier for potential travelers to understand increasingly complex regulations.
Any such program would be voluntary, as decisions on Kovid-19 travel restrictions are within the scope of individual countries,
EU leaders find it easy to understand travel restrictions because a deceptive patchwork of restrictions has prevented some potential travelers from crossing the border, which has prevented the rebound of the region’s economy.
Other areas are also at least grasping for ways to open limited travel due to infection. Asian governments have been engaged in lengthy, complex negotiations to establish travel corridors between their countries, but details such as testing and quarantine protocols have been negotiated in many respects. US officials are seeking an important tourism and trade route to travel between New York and London.
The loosening of sanctions this summer helped Europe’s economy and partially saved the tourist season which is important in countries such as Italy and Spain. But it also contributed to a big jump in the number of infections. Countries like Britain, France and Spain are now confirmed to be close to or more than last spring’s numbers. The test, however, is now more extensive and captures more transitions than during the first wave.
ups and downs
In Europe infection rates vary widely, which is a challenge for policy makers.
14-day cumulative number of Kovid-19 cases per 100,000 people for select countries
Air travel in Europe began in June with the lifting of the national lockout. Travel recovery began in mid-August for most countries and has dropped rapidly since then. According to Citigroup data, the number of flights in Europe was reduced by almost two-thirds in a week on October 4, compared to 46% in the US and 33% in the Asia Pacific region during the same period last year.
Most of Europe is still off-limits for tourists coming from the US, although in many countries, including Italy and France, students are allowed to exchange. They must quarantine upon arrival.
Attempts to identify and quarantine infected people upon arrival can be fruitless as many experts state that the majority of transmission is not due to cross-border travelers and is instead associated with socialization by large ceremonies such as young people and weddings.
“Coming from overseas is not an effective prevention method when you have an epidemic like the one we are seeing right now in Europe and most of the world,” said Enrico Bucci, a systems biologist at Tanderi. “When a country is virus-free or nearly virus-free, closing borders is noticeable because it can be effective.”
In France, which is one of Europe’s largest outbreaks, tourists can enter other countries of the European Union and places where infections are less, such as Canada and Australia. Tourists arriving from most other countries are barred, but those traveling for work and other reasons are allowed, if they arrive in France, or a negative covid less than 72 hours before arriving at the plane or airport. -19 test occurs.
In August, Italy began mandatory testing for those coming from Spain, Malta and Croatia and later added large parts of France. Last week, Italy expanded the list to include Britain, the Netherlands, Belgium and the Czech Republic. According to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, 157 and 263 per million inhabitants are confirmed daily in those countries, compared to 38 for Italy. Italy has blocked all arrivals from about 20 countries including Bangladesh, Brazil and Serbia.
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In the Netherlands, people returning from countries with moderate levels of infection have to quarantine for 10 days. Government officials, athletes and journalists are exempted. In Belgium, travelers from countries with high levels of infection have to quarantine for seven days, with a five-day trial. They can end their quarantine only when they test negative.
The European Union wants member countries to use common norms when deciding whether to open or close their borders. Criteria include the cumulative number of new infections per 100,000 people over a 14-day period and the percentage of positive tests over a seven-day period.
The color-coded EU map will use green to indicate countries that have a low number of daily infections and a percentage of positive tests less than 3%. The map will use orange and red to indicate high rates and gray for countries that do not supply enough information or do not conduct enough testing.
In June Britain imposed a 14-day quarantine on all people entering the country, but the following month removed the rule of arrival from 75 countries and territories. America is not included in that list
Since the end of July, the UK has gradually resumed requirements on arrival from several European countries with a few exceptions, such as Italy, Germany and Sweden. People entering from these countries should declare where they are and they will be isolated. Exceptions include diplomats, truck drivers and civil aviation workers.
The UK Department of Transport said on Wednesday that it had set up a task force aimed at allowing a safe return to global travel, including examining a test regime for international arrivals and whether passenger self-segregation before departure can do.
—Stephen Fiedler, Matthew Dalton and Valentina Pop contributed to this article.
Write Eric Silver at [email protected]
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