Summer holidays: EU Commission presents guidelines

Brussels has presented recommendations for tourism in the EU this summer: member states should ensure that hygiene and physical distancing rules are observed and that contacts can be tracked. A condition for the resumption of tourism is that the risk of infection is low, there are sufficient tests, and health systems are not overstretched. Can the plan get the sector back on its feet?

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Dnevnik (SI) /

Just as non-binding as WHO recommendations

The EU Commission's concept is nothing more than a friendly recommendation, Dnevnik criticises:

“Since it has no authority to tell countries how to regulate their tourism sector, the Commission's guidelines are like the recommendations of the World Health Organisation. They're just a guideline that members can take or leave. They're detailed but at the same time formulated in very general terms. Their central theme is protecting public health. Flexibility should ensure that the end result is as positive as possible for everyone. At the same time, these recommendations express the desire for economic flows, cross-border freedom of movement and tourism to be restored as quickly as possible.”

Večernji list (HR) /

Put the sector on the ventilator

Večernji list doubts that the tourism industry will emerge from its crisis this year:

“This season is already lost, even if the peak season hasn't yet started. The only question now is how bad things will be. The EU Commission knows this, as do the member states, and efforts are being made to help entrepreneurs who make a living from tourism. However many hotels, apartment rental companies, beach operators, restaurants and so on will not survive. The important thing is to keep companies and employees on ventilators until next year, in the hope that a cure and vaccine will be found to defeat the dictator named Covid-19, who changed our lives.”

L'Echo (BE) /

Now the EU can prove itself

Now the EU member states must do their bit and follow the Commission's guidelines, L'Echo urges:

“Saving a key sector of the economy is legitimate, and even vital - provided it isn't done just any old way. European coordination is the key to success, not only when it comes to reopening borders but also regarding the hygiene regulations to be observed in transport and accommodation. In precisely this area, which by definition is transnational, the EU is expected to show leadership and efficiency. This is exactly where it can prove its added value. So far the principle of every man for himself has prevailed. The Commission's plan is a step in the right direction, but since it's not binding it is important that the member states play along.”

The Daily Telegraph (GB) /

Holidays more important than ever this summer

The UK's Health Secretary Matt Hancock said earlier this week that he didn't think extended trips abroad would be possible this summer. The Daily Telegraph stresses that holidays are essential:

“What is truly exasperating is that, despite his Cabinet brief, Matt Hancock seems to have a pitiful grasp of mental health and how to maintain it. Clue: isolation and staying indoors may safeguard us physically, but there's real harm being done to our heads. Holidays are not a luxury. They are a necessity. ... Hancock bossily telling us on television that they aren't going to happen has hit public morale right in the solar plexus. Which is to say: we are furious. Maybe holidays could be rebranded as Mental Health Retreats?”