ETOA Newsletter, September 2021

This Newsletter includes updates on:

  • European Commission consultation on Future of Tourism
  • Recovery drivers in 2022
  • Travel Restrictions, including new ETOA resource
  • Climate Crisis
  • Brexit and the travel industry
  • ETOA Insight Hub
  • ETOA Featured Members
  • Partners and events

European Tourism in Transition

The worst affected Member States by the COVID-19 pandemic are those highly dependent on tourism and unable to compensate the loss of foreign, EU and non-EU, travellers with domestic demand. Most key travel and tourism infrastructures are not designed to operate efficiently under crisis conditions, such as the current pandemic. It is important to ensure that the aftermath of the pandemic will not create long-term problems for international travelling, for example by having incompatible vaccination certificates between continents. The health and safety concerns of visitors may impact their travel preferences and it will be crucial to promote Europe as a safe and quality destination.

These words could have been written by a trade association: in fact, they come from a European Commission working paper. The continued focus on tourism is welcome and echoes the constructive engagement we have experienced throughout the crisis. With recognition comes the chance to develop practical policy to ensure greater resilience. Serious problems remain. From the continued complexity (and obscurity) of travel restrictions to the unavailability of adequate insurance, uncertainty over operating conditions prevents pricing and slows sales.

While much direct regulatory competence affecting tourism will remain national, regional and local, better strategic coordination at European level is necessary. It is vital that the Commission hears directly from all tourism stakeholders, as well as trade associations, about what they think will make the sector more resilient.  The consultation closes on September 15th. Have your say here.

In a section entitled ‘Improve the EU capacity to manage shocks affecting travelling‘ the paper suggested that industry ‘could undertake investments in adaptation and preparedness.’ Well, yes. If it had the money. Dominated by micro and SMEs, Europe’s tourism ecosystem’s financial reserves are at the lowest they have ever been.

The same document puts the estimated investment gap for tourism in 2020-21 at EUR 161 billion (highest of all ecosystems). “High level of indebtedness increases the risk of slow restart, and also of the ownership of some services moving outside Europe. This can further reduce the capacity of tourism enterprises to invest in the development of more resilient supply chains and new services.

National governments must ensure that the recovery funds bring benefit across the industry.

Recovery Drivers in 2022

2022 will see the production of business carried forward from 2020-21 as well as new sales. Product demand is changing: there will be more small-group travel and itineraries to destinations that are typically less crowded. Within established destinations, alternative attractions are sought as capacity restrictions affect options. For the tourism ecosystem, this represents opportunity on a scale not seen since the early 90s. At time of writing, ETOA’s network includes over 350 buyers looking for product in Europe from niche operators and start-ups to global multinationals, adding new members selling in markets from Mexico to South Korea.

Our industry is still hurting: it still needs government support and urgent policy reform. But the people who work in it are highly resilient and creative. There are grounds for optimism. Transatlantic flight routes are re-opening fast, and intra-Schengen travel is becoming more straightforward as uptake and recognition both of vaccinations and related digital certificates grows. International leisure tourism will play a leading part in Europe’s economic recovery. ETOA is here to support that.

To connect with the ETOA network and build for recovery, register for The Global European Marketplace today or if you’re not yet a member, check out our Tourism Recovery Packages.


Climate Crisis

The IPCC’s recently published sixth assessment report describes the climate crisis and its potential development, it does not go into detail about solutions: that is for COP26 and subsequent reports. But the urgency is clear: to have a better than 50% chance of keeping the temperature increase to below 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels, the reductions required go further than what has already been promised, as recent commentary by The Economist makes clear. An increase close to 2 degrees will be highly disruptive. ETOA’s recent statement on topic is available here.

The political and behavioural challenges are clear. The Tony Blair institute recently published a paper on the behavioural change required if the UK is to meet emissions goals, contrasting that with the structural changes such as a shift from coal in electricity generation that have achieved most of the emissions reductions to date.

While the proposed changes required at first sight look deceptively modest, one finding gives the travel industry pause for thought: public acceptance for, say, tax on flying is higher than increase in food costs. On the other hand, the profile of consumers who are keen to act responsibly may correlate closely with those with the disposable income to spend on holiday flights, but the report focuses on the UK and does not address the implications of a growing global middle class will be in the market for international travel.

For more on this topic, see our climate page.

Travel Restrictions

To assist planning, ETOA has published a comprehensive index of travel protocols, for each EU and EFTA member state and the United Kingdom. The content covers border entry requirements travelling for tourism and in-destination certification requirements and links to the relevant government webpages. The notes summarising each country will be updated next week after the latest EU white list and UK Government reviews.

The EU white list is a list of non-EU countries the European Council recommend to EU member and EFTA states that restrictions on non-essential travel, including tourism, should be lifted for all travellers (vaccinated and non-vaccinated). Confusingly, the list is sometimes referred to as the EU green list.

Should a country be removed from the white list, the European Council also recommends that fully vaccinated travellers from countries not on the EU white list should be permitted (unless from a country identified as having a variant of concern). Member states have discretion whether this recommendation is adopted, which countries are designated as having a variant of concern, the vaccine certification accepted, and whether a pre-arrival test is also required for fully vaccinated travellers. Many EU and EFTA member states are permitting fully vaccinated travellers from Canada, USA and the UK as vaccines administered in these countries are largely the same as approved by the European Medicines Agency and certification is in English (acceptance of Covishield varies). The government webpages in our index of travel protocols state which vaccine certification is accepted and when a traveller is deemed to be fully vaccinated.

This week’s UK Government review will assess the colour classification of each country for arriving into England as part of their regular three week review. To date, all nations of the UK have the same country classification list. Testing requirements including pre-departure and up to day 2 after arrival are next due to be reviewed at the end of September.

Brexit and the travel industry

For guidance please see our Brexit Post-Transition page and the member-only guiding regulation page.

From 1st October 2021, EU national ID cards will no longer be accepted for most travellers entering the UK. This includes travellers arriving directly into Northern Ireland. Exemption list includes EU nationals resident in the UK who have applied to the EU Settlement Scheme.

Our understanding is EU national ID cards will be accepted for stays in the UK continuing beyond 1st October 2021 if entry to the UK is before this date as long as the EU ID card is valid for the duration of stay. EU nationals unable to use a ID card to enter the UK will require a passport to be valid for the duration of stay in the UK and able to use e-gates (if in use).

Multilingual pages

ETOA’s website now has landing pages to provide a short introduction to our activities for readers in French, German, Italian and Spanish.

German page

Find out more

Spanish page

Find out more

French page

Find out more

Italian page

Find out more

If you are an Italian supplier interested in knowing more about how the travel trade works and what they are looking for in new partners, you can  visit the Italian page to get the link to the Travel Trade Masterclass we hosted in July with great speakers, our member buyers:

  • Paolo Meineri, Senior Director Sourcing & Contract Management, EF Cultural Tours GmbH
  • Piergiorgio Pisano, Contracting Manager Land Services, Globus Family of Brands
  • Luca Poddi, General Manager, Abercrombie & Kent Italy & Croatia

Check our latest statistics, opinion and research pieces on the Insight Hub.

ETOA is proud to be home to over 1,200 members who trust us to help them do better tourism business in Europe. New ETOA members listed here include buyers from across Europe as well as the USA and Australia along with a wide range of leading European suppliers. We are excited to be welcoming a number of important new buyers from Mexico, Brazil and the Philippines amongst many others. These new tour operator and wholesaler members are all keen to do more business with our supplier members whilst also supporting our events, policy and research activities.

Full details of all our new members are available by clicking on the image below.


Fast track to recovery: find new partners through ETOA Membership

Our network of active and ambitious members is growing every month and we’d love you to join them. They use membership to do more and better business with each other. Our policy and insight materials help them make better decisions and stay informed. If you are interested to find out more about how cost effective ETOA membership can be, please click on the button below or contact the team at

Member information

Why is it so important for you to use your member portal? Because in just a few clicks, you can:
•    Update your company profile
•    Make changes to your information
•    Manage your invoices and payments

Login Here, check our portal help page or contact if you are having difficulties to log in.

New events on the calendar -ETOA Member Drop-Ins

For our members, we have recently introduced online ‘Drop Ins’, a chance to:
– Meet some of the ETOA team
– Meet other ETOA members
– Discuss live issues that are impacting on your business
– Hear the latest updates on ETOA’s activities
– Get tips and tricks to get the most from your ETOA membership
– Ask questions

​​​​​Read more and register here


Register for The Global European Marketplace 2021 – the attendee lists are now live!

We invite you to check the list of buyers and suppliers who have already registered for The Global European Marketplace (29th October 2021, London) and Relaunch ’22 (30th November, online).
ETOA member supplier attendance covers both access to the in-person Global European Marketplace as well as the global online workshop, Relaunch ’22. ETOA member tour operators attend free and can select to attend either or both editions! Book your ticket today!

ETOA Stand at WTM London 2021

ETOA has secured a stand space at this year’s World Travel Market London, which is taking place at ExCel between 1-3 November 2021.  Co-exhibiting spaces are now available to book for ETOA members – all stand partners will be assigned a desk at the live event as well as the virtual show on the 8-9 November.  Prices from £3,500+VAT.

We will not be taking the usual space or size of stand this year but have similar offer with a limited number of desks.  We are offering the desks options on a first-come, first-served basis.  Nearly half the options are now gone so secure your desk today – contact for more information.


Webinar | Europe & Korea – Developing Common Interest in Tourism
Thursday 16th September
08:00 London / 09:00 Brussels / 16:00 Seoul

Representatives from European destinations, the Korean outbound market and the intermediaries who connect them will meet to discuss the state of play of this market and the opportunities for developing commercial interests.

We invite Korean operators and agents, European destinations, specialist receptive agencies and any professional with an interest in this market to join this webinar where the panel with explore:

  • Korean outbound market profile and statistics
  • Disruption and developments in travel distribution for the Korean market
  • What European destinations are doing for the Korean market
  • How to develop the commercial network

To register, please click here.

Partner Events and Offers

3 weeks to go! The countdown is on to TravelTech Show on 14-15 September. With sessions ranging from new payment models to cybersecurity threats, and from AI-based personalisation in travel to blockchain technology – our conference programme will arm you with the insights you need to future-proof your strategy.

Find out more

UK Inbound invites ETOA members to join its annual conference on 16-17 September in Manchester. With topical industry discussions, inspirational keynotes, a B2B workshop and a networking evening, this year it also includes a virtual workshop on 24 September featuring additional content online. For further details and registration click here.