LONDON, 17 March 2021: WTTC President & CEO, Gloria Guevara welcomed news of what she called an incredible stimulus package handed to the travel and tourism businesses across the US that promises a much-needed boost while the Covid-19 pandemic continues to ravage the sector.

The USD14 billion allocated to airlines will come as a
monumental relief, following almost a year without widespread international
travel, which has left many on the brink of collapse, she said.

“Our recent economic modelling showed the devasting impact
of the COVID-19 pandemic on the US Travel & Tourism sector, with 9.2
million jobs impacted and USD155 billion lost from the US economy due to the
collapse of international travel last year. This catastrophic loss to the
economy equates to a shortfall of USD425 million every day, or nearly USD3
billion a week.”

The WTTC statement thanked President Biden and Vice
President Harris for recognising the importance of our sector.

“These bold steps are needed to reinvigorate the travel
sector and will provide a significant boost to the US economy as the country
begins to turn the tide against this terrible virus.”

WTTC emphasised that the successful restarting of
international travel relied on the introduction of a comprehensive testing
regime on departure and arrival.

“Testing for non-vaccinated travellers, along with
mandatory mask-wearing and increased health and hygiene protocols, would allow
the safe resumption on international travel. It would avoid the risk of
transmission, save jobs and help plug the gaping hole in stricken US economies,”
WTTC concluded.