The lack of an internationally recognized Covid-19 vaccine certification system could hinder travel recovery as many travelers are left confused about quarantine requirements and travel restrictions, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
According to the company’s latest poll, travel restrictions are the second biggest deterrent to travel for 55 percent of respondents.
“Vaccines were hailed as a travel enabler and a glimmer of hope for the industry. However, fragmented rules and a lack of mutual agreements continue to restrict travel,” said Gus Gardner, Associate Travel and Tourism Analyst at GlobalData.
According to Gardner, travelers have been left confused over how to provide their vaccination status with varying rules across destinations.
“For some destinations, travelers need to jump through several hoops to prove their status, and if traveling to numerous countries, the process often differs,” he said, adding that although it appears restrictions have eased, the complexity of proving vaccination will continue to be a barrier to travel.
GlobalData’s research points out that different nations dictate varying rules to show proof of vaccination, from paper to digital records.
“Proof of vaccination seems to be an afterthought of the vaccine rollout. The lack of digitalized records in some countries, including the US, makes proving vaccinated status laborious,” Gardner added.
According to GlobalData, with varying rules, some travelers prefer to opt for domestic trips, dealing a blow to destinations that are dependent on international visitation.
IATA Travel Pass: Uptake has been poor
“IATA’s travel pass was hailed as an industry solution but uptake has been poor, and there has been limited government integration. With other providers entering the space, it has created a fragmented system requiring travelers to upload proof themselves to generate a digital pass,” Gardner underlined, adding that holidaymakers want easier rules to travel.
GlobalData is calling on the industry to work together to integrate a solution that works for all industry stakeholders, or else people will shy away from travel due to the complicated nature of proving vaccination status.
“Unless steps are taken soon, it could potentially suppress international demand as rules could be too difficult to understand and destinations’ recovery may stall as a result,” Gardner concluded.