Cyprus urges joined-up approach on EU air travel

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Cyprus has called on its European Union counterparts to take common action on air travel and connectivity to mitigate the negative impact of the coronavirus.

Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos sent a non-paper calling for joint action by all Member States with the ultimate aim of tackling the negative effects caused by the pandemic in the aviation sector.

He points out there is no uniformity when it comes to drawing up criteria for categorising countries according to their epidemiological risk by the union’s Member States.

“Although health protocols are implemented to stem the spread of the virus, multiple systems in place in the Member States are based on different entry requirements, thus further complicating travel procedures for the public, the airlines and the aviation industry in general,” said Karousos.

In order to overcome the current negative situation and increase traveller confidence, the Transport Ministry has proposed that member states adopt a common approach.

The Ministry is suggesting that passengers travelling from one EU country to another must meet the common entry requirements regardless of their origin and destination.

Cyprus is proposing that a platform for passengers to register their data (EU Flight Pass) be established in the fashion of the “CyprusFlightPass”.

“The implementation of this tool will help to better serve travellers as well as the aviation industry (airlines, airports, etc.) and the authorities of each Member State.

Among other things, the implementation of this tool will help in better data analysis so that the competent authorities of each Member State have a clearer picture of the spread of coronavirus at a pan-European level,” notes the Ministry.

Cyprus has also suggested the introduction of speed tests for travellers to be carried out at airports prior to their departure.

“This will help to stem the spread of the virus. Applying this practice will help passengers feel safer”.