Travel associations have demanded urgent support to help the industry survive the coronavirus pandemic.
Both the European Tourism Association (Etoa) and the Business Travel Association (BTA) have asked the government to reach out to the industry as travel tensions around Covid-19 rage on.
Etoa has asked for temporary state aid, fast access to short- and medium-term loans, deferrals of social contributions, the fast launch of a European Unemployment Reinsurance Scheme, protection for workers and the simplification of Visa rules.
It stressed it welcomed the European Commission’s proposal, announced on 16 March, to ban any inbound travel into the EU.
Support for destination marketing efforts once the coronavirus crisis is over would also be helpful, Etoa said.
The BTA has also urged the government to take action, highlighting that travel is worth £10 billion to the economy.
In letters to the chancellor Rishi Sunak, secretary of state for transport Grant Shapps, and secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy Alok Sharma, the BTA asked for credit to be made available for companies and a three-month break from taxes such as business rates and national insurance.
"Many travel management companies have suffered huge losses in revenue and are now facing a cash flow crisis," said Clive Wratten, chief executive of the BTA.
"These are strong businesses that are vital enablers for the UK economy, but the sad reality is that many could fail before a demand for business travel resumes."