Iata has called the scope of the UK government’s plans to reopen travel into question, and urged ministers to provide greater clarity on the next steps.
The association said while the decision last week, which came into effect on Monday (2 August), to ease quarantine for fully vaccinated US and EU arrivals was welcome and came as an "important step in the UK’s recovery", it raised questions about the Westminster government’s wider vision to reopen to the rest of the world.
"Recognising vaccinated travellers from the US and Europe is a positive, logical and long-overdue development," said Iata.
"Along with restoring the individual freedom to reconnect and the ability of businesses to operate in global markets, it will help rescue livelihoods in the travel and tourism sector."
However, the association said the industry needed to know more about plans to restore UK and why the measures that came into force on Monday were so limited.
"Why is the scope restricted to US and EU instead of open to all those who have been vaccinated?" questioned Iata. "Why are travellers forced to test twice, the second time using expensive PCR tests? What’s the plan to enable unvaccinated people who have tested negative to travel without quarantine? And when will the US reciprocate?"
The UK’s aviation sector wrote to Grant Shapps at the weekend to seek answers on several of these matters, also calling into question the extent of the UK government’s plan to reopen.
In its letter to Shapps, Airlines UK said the measures wouldn’t address the crisis in consumer confidence, with UK travellers booking less than 20% of trips taken pre-Covid compared to 60% in Germany and nearly 50% in France.