The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has urged the UK government to scrap its "failed and damaging" traffic light system, and called on G7 leaders to step up and "save travel."
The council said the "controversial" system had "wreaked havoc" throughout the travel industry and should be replaced if there was to be any hope of saving "hundreds of thousands" of travel and tourism jobs in the UK.
It also warned that the UK could lose out on crucial funding, investment and spending if the government did not provide sufficient support for the sector.
The WTTC has also called on the G7, leaders of which will meet in Cornwall this week (11-13 June), to play a "critical role" in driving change to "save the global travel and tourism sector".
The WTTC advocates allow fully vaccinated travellers, and those with proof of a negative test, to travel to countries with similar or higher vaccination levels to that of the UK – and to destinations with low infection rates.
"Consumers, airlines and the wider travel sector were promised a [traffic light] watchlist and three weeks’ notice of any changes from green to amber – not just four days,’ said Virginia Messina, WTTC senior vice-president and acting chief executive, referring to the UK government’s decision to relegate Portugal to its amber list.
Of the traffic light system itself, Messina added: "It has been incredibly disruptive and costly for both travel and tourism businesses and consumers. It simply hasn’t worked."