TUI is ‘preparing intensively’ for holidays to resume, with the European giant in talks with the key destinations of Greece, Spain and Cyprus.
Chief Executive Fritz Joussen predicted customers will be able to travel this summer, and declared there was ‘no doubt’ a vaccination passport would ‘restore freedom to travel’.
“Travelling in Europe will be possible in summer 2021 – safely and responsibly,” he insisted.
Joussen said TUI was working in ‘close coordination’ with Greece, Spain and Cyprus over how travel will resume, with discussions to be extended to western and eastern Mediterranean destinations in the coming weeks.
“The desire for holidays has been high throughout the pandemic,” he said in a statement. “Demand and bookings are picking up after the UK government unveiled a timetable for an end to the Covid restrictions.
“Germany is also preparing to restart and exit the lockdown. It is clear that interest in holidays is turning into bookings and revenues again. ”
He said southern European governments in particular have developed ‘good concepts for the restart’ of travel.
“The core of these plans are rapid tests, vaccinations and uniform proof of immunity,” Joussen said.
“A European vaccination passport can help restore freedom to travel. There is no doubt about that.
“With a uniform EU certificate, politicians can now create an important basis for summer travel.
“As long as not everyone can be vaccinated, rapid tests are the second important building block for safe holidays.
“They are reliable and are now available in sufficient numbers.”