Airports Council International Latin America and the Caribbean (ACI-LAC); Latin American and Caribbean Air Transport Association (ALTA); Asociación Sudamericana de Tiendas Libres (ASUTIL); and the International Air Transport Association (IATA), have today made a joint call for a globally- consistent approach to testing international passengers as a more efficient alternative to quarantine measures.
The global shut down of air transport as a result of COVID-19 travel restrictions has had a catastrophic impact on employment in all the sectors involved in air travel, the duty-free industry and tourism in general. As industry representatives, we call on governments to consider the urgent removal of quarantine restrictions and implement a systematic approach to COVID-19 testing. This will provide an effective way to give governments the confidence to re-open borders, which will facilitate air travel and tourism.
With health and safety of passengers and employees being of utmost importance, the aviation and duty-free stakeholders support the guidance issued by International Civil Aviation Organization’s Council Aviation Recovery Taskforce (CART). These include best practices and recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) and local health authorities, permitting the implementation of the layered approach to health measures that enable safe operations amid the COVID-19 crisis.
ACI, ASUTIL, ALTA and IATA emphasized that a systematic approach to testing must be the key focus. The associations call for an internationally agreed and recognized approach to testing passengers during the travel process that is fast, practical, accurate, low-cost, easy-to-use and supported by public health authorities.
Airports, airlines, industry suppliers and duty-free operators are united in the view that a consistent approach to testing passengers will help to restore the confidence of travelers and citizens, avoid border closures, and remove cumbersome quarantine measures which are hampering the genuine efforts of the aviation industry to recover.