The UK tourism industry has, perhaps unsurprisingly, called for tourism to be top of the government’s agenda as Brexit negotiations begin. Prime minister Theresa May today officially notified the European Union of the UK’s intention to leave the club, triggering Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon.
British travel group ABTA has criticised the government for failing to back the continuation of the European Health Insurance Card scheme following Brexit. At present, a valid EHIC gives UK citizens the right to access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in another European country.
The European Commission has presented its proposal to keep the scope of its emissions trading system to cover flights within the EU, known as Stop the Clock. This step follows the historic agreement reached by governments last year on a global scheme to address climate change as proposed by the United Nations aviation specialised agency, International Civil Aviation Organisation.
Aarhus and Pafos have taken up the title of European Capital of Culture for 2017. The cultural programme will officially begin on January 21st in Aarhus. The opening ceremony for Pafos 2017 will take place on January 28th, with Christos Stylianides, commissioner for humanitarian aid and crisis management, and Nicos Anastasiades, president of Cyprus in attendance.
During a recent visit to Brussels, Belgium, the secretary general of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation, Taleb Rifai, discussed how to reinforce the collaboration of the organisation with the European Union. Rifai met the EU commissioners for education, culture, youth and sports, Tibor Navracsics; for environment, maritime affairs and fisheries, Karmenu Vella; and for international cooperation and development, Neven Mimica.
With the peak travel season about to begin, British holidaymakers are set to discover the immediate effects of the vote to the Leave the European Union, with the pound falling and prices increasing abroad. ABTA has assured travellers that there will be no immediate change in European regulations in the face of the UK vote to exit the European Union, claiming: “People due to travel this summer will see little changes to their holiday.
UKinbound has revealed that 82 per cent of its members believe that staying in the EU is important to their business. The organisation is one of the leading trade associations, representing 350 members of the travel and tourism industry in Britain. The announcement, made at UKinbound’s Annual Convention, follows prime minister David Cameron’s recent request to the business community to share their views on EU membership.
Etihad Airways has urged the European Commission to embrace “bold, exciting and world-leading reforms” as part of the Strategic Aviation Package to overhaul Europe’s air transport industry. In a detailed submission to the commission, the airline advocates a policy which actively facilitates competition and consumer choice, addresses critical shortfalls in aviation infrastructure and eases restrictions on market access and investments by non-European airlines.
New EU rules that will bring protection for package holidays in line with today’s digital age moved a step closer today following a political agreement by EU government ministers at today’s Competitiveness Council. The rules will extend protection of the 1990 EU Package Travel Directive to cover not only traditional package holidays, but also give clear protection to 120 million consumers who book other forms of combined travel.
The European Commission has updated for the 21st time the list of airlines subject to an operating ban or operational restrictions within Europe. Following improvements in the safety situation in the Philippines, Philippine Airlines is the first airline from this country allowed back into European skies since 2010.
In the margins of the EU Transport Council in Luxembourg, the European Union and Israel have signed a comprehensive air transport agreement which will gradually open up and integrate their respective markets, develop an aviation area with common rules, offer economic benefits for consumers and new opportunities for the industry.