We hope that this update finds you all well. As some of the ways we have had to adapt are starting to feel like the new normal – social distancing and cautious behaviors – the first of July marks another significant step forward in the reopening of our economies. Governments in Europe are now allowing indoor gatherings with up to 100 people, outdoors of up to 250 people, sporting events, and bars and restaurants continue to expand capacities under strict guidelines.
Lifted travel bans
Most importantly on this date, the EU announced travel bans are now lifted to welcome travelers from 14 non-European countries including Canada, Australia New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand, Morocco, Japan Tunesia, Uruguay and and others. The primary criteria used for identifying countries to be included in this list is their ability to control/contain COVID-19 virus within their respective countries. Countries with historically significant arrival numbers to the EU which are noticeably absent from this list are Turkey and the USA.
Airlines servicing routes between the USA and Europe are struggling with reopening of their routes due to the uncertainty, and sometimes conflicting information given by and between respective governments. Many flights were announced to open earlier in June, but have been postponed again based on the latest spikes of new infections in the US. Additional obstacles exist for travelers still wanting or needing to travel to the US – neither ESTA nor visa applications are currently being processed.
We will continue to monitor this situation and remain hopeful for the future. We thank all members for sharing their positive messages and inspirational content as it helps to keep us optimistic and inspired to travel when the time is right. And to our American friends, we wish you and your loved ones a happy Fourth of July!