For generations, international travel has been enjoyed by many, and has always had several rules and measures in place, to keep us all safe.
Passports keep tabs on us all, and make sure that those who pose a threat to our safety have their movements restricted or monitored. They also make sure we enjoy freedoms in the territories where these are allowed and restrict our time or access in those with different rules or cultures.
Visas extend our passport privileges and allow a more controlled access or duration in some countries where tighter controls are required.
Inoculations protect us when visiting countries where disease or infection unusual to us may be prevalent, and so build up immunity to such risk.
There is now a new global risk to international travel; COVID 19. Depending on where we travel, we may be exposed to the risk of catching or spreading this deadly virus. But this too has an effective tool to manage the risk encountered when travelling. The vaccine.
A double jab will sufficiently reduce the risk of catching or spreading the disease, so this is fast becoming a requirement of international travel.
In the same way that we all need a valid passport, sometimes a visa and occasionally a specific shot, we now need to prove that we have had two doses of one of the available COVID vaccines.
The COVID vaccine provides more than a 90% defence against serious illness or death from this disease. Proof of your double jab by means of the NHS app does not threaten your freedom, it gives freedom to you and in turn you give the gift of freedom to everyone around you.
Moreover, global take-up of the vaccine is vital to the recovery of our industry and incentive travel in particular. Without it, borders will remain restricted and travellers at risk of infection. As travel professionals, we owe it to the industry, and to the world, to set a positive example. I implore all our GB event planners to get the jab, and insist on a proof of vaccine in all your future event programmes.
This is how you choose to help or hinder the recovery of our industry.