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“Health Passport” under consideration for travellers to Greece

The idea is for it to serve as proof that the holder does not suffer from COVID-19

  • April 29, 2020 11:30
  • Author Anton Stoyanov
Medium mediterranean 2059092 1280

With countries slowly moving towards reopening their economies and lifting their lockdown restrictions, citizens are also eager to once again set foot on foreign soil and travel the world. Tourism agencies and the relevant institutions are also waiting with bated breath for the return of tourists and are already considering different ways for how travel can be done in a safe and secure manner that protects the health of visitors and locals alike.

Considering new approaches

In Greece, the Ministry of Tourism has already begun considering new ways on how it can reopen its tourism industry as it is one of the key pillars of the country’s economy. Officials have already stated that this year’s summer season will only be three months long – between July and September, and in a best-case scenario, tourists might keep on arriving throughout October and November.

Yet the key question for officials not only in Greece but across all of Europe remains how exactly would tourists be allowed entry into other countries without being forced into mandatory quarantine.

One of the solutions pitched by the Greek Tourism Ministry is the introduction of a so-called “Health Passport” that would be used as proof that the individual carrying it is not sick with COVID-19. The coronavirus test will be performed in the country of origin before citizens are allowed to travel to their chosen destination.

As of right now, however, such an approach might only work for the EU Member States, as the European Commission and other institutions are also currently considering similar schemes that are meant to allow Europeans to safely go on vacation during the summer.

By adopting the use of such “Health Passports”, countries would not only help each other but will also provide significant relief to their own tourism industries and would substantially boost their COVID-19 testing capabilities.

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