Charlotte Bond and David Cartwright, directors of ATI Holidays (Africa Tourist Info), which specialises in itineraries to Namibia, Botswana and South Africa, have urged the Government to rethink its approach to international travel.
In a letter address to Boris Johnson, Grant Shapps, Dominic Raab, Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid, the duo call for four key actions to be taken:
- Scrap the traffic light system, including the red list – using instead the ‘proportionate’ advice issues by the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office.
- End the hotel quarantine scheme
- End testing on arrival for all fully-vaccinated travellers, regardless of nationality
- Accept proof of vaccination for vaccines administered aboard.
“Only by taking these decisions will the UK finally start to catch up with most other countries around the world, including USA and EU,” reads the letter.
“This is your last possible chance to save the UK travel and airline industries and to restore some semblance of public confidence and trust.”
Bond and Cartwright cited Germany as a leading example. “Why is the UK still insisting on only reviewing individual countries on a 3-weekly basis? The Robert Koch Institute in Germany have been announcing changes as and when needed, either when countries needed a higher risk level or when data demonstrated that restrictions should be eased.
“Your intractable approach means that travel companies selling Africa are losing not only the three weeks of bookings after each failure to move us off the red list, but bookings for the month after the next review date as the public have no confidence in sensible changes being made.”