An alliance of travel and tourism organisations is calling for the European Union to establish a taskforce to restore freedom of movement across the continent.

The European Tourism Manifesto alliance, a group of more than 60 public and private travel and tourism organisations, made the call as it outlined recommendations for the relaunch of travel in time for the “critical” summer season.

The taskforce should develop and implement a travel restart plan and recovery roadmap, it said.

The alliance added: “Vaccination, or vaccination certificates, should not be mandatory in order to travel (once vaccination is more widely available), but vaccinated travellers or those with proven immunity should be exempted from entry bans, testing and quarantine restrictions in accordance with the latest scientific insights on the reduced ability of those vaccinated to still spread the virus.”

The recommendations were shared with EU governments ahead of two key discussions – a videoconference of the European leaders on February 25-26 and a meeting of tourism ministers on March 1.

A statement by the alliance said: “As EU vaccination programmes progress and protect the most vulnerable citizens, we must jointly prepare for the restart of travel.

“There is simply no time to lose – preparations on a common approach should begin now, in order to restore public confidence by the summer.

“Our recommendations detail a joint way forward towards restoring travel & tourism and freedom of movement on behalf of European citizens.”

As well as the taskforce, the alliance wants “an improved and effective European coordination of travel restrictions and requirements” to offer predictability to travellers and workers in the sector.

The alliance wants “a harmonised EU framework for travel-related testing” and coordination on e-health certificates.

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