The travel industry was one of the biggest ones to take the hit of the pandemic. The airlines, hotels, travel destinations, everything was closed down, which made the lives of travel enthusiasts havoc. Covid 19 has been in the limelight of the whole world for almost a year, and it hasn’t been regular back since.
Like all the others, the travel industry has also been looking for ways to get back in the game. They are opening up their airlines, hotels, travel packages, and everything else. Everyone wants to escape their homes that they have been holed up in for the past year and get out, explore and have a long relaxing vacation. This makes up for a significant opportunity for the travel and especially the aviation industries. Apart from just exploring, people have been away from their homes since the inception of the worldwide lockdowns. Students, professionals, and people who work in other countries haven’t been to get back to their families and homeland because of this pandemic.
All of these problems are just the tip of the iceberg. But there is a silver lining; vaccination has been a road to get back to normal. While most developed countries have started on the vaccination drives, there is a long way before everyone gets their dose. Everyone stuck in a foreign country is eager to get back to their homes and visit their loved ones. For example, if you are an Indian stuck in the US, you would be all over to book those direct flights to Delhi from USA to return to your home.
The vaccination drives
While all the countries are looking for ways to increase production and vaccinate as many people as possible, it would still take time. The younger and healthier generation might not get the vaccine this year, making it another hit for the travel and aviation industry.
The efficacies of vaccine and their efficiency in controlling the virus’s spread have been in question. While they have published results indicating that vaccines are proficient in containing the virus, there is no proof that a vaccinated traveller cannot carry it.
Would every flight passenger need vaccination?
Travel enthusiasts worldwide are looking for cheapairlines to get going with their budget trips and make up for all the time they have lost during the pandemic. The question of vaccination brings their aspirations to a halt.
Not all countries have the resources and structure to vaccinate all the individuals looking to travel. The shortage of resources and vaccination opportunities makes it difficult for the people if vaccination becomes mandatory for flying in 2021.
Let us discuss the views of different parties who would be benefiting or taking a hit if vaccination becomes mandatory for flying:
Cheapairlines cannot afford to make vaccination a compulsion for their travellers. This is because not all countries can produce vaccines independently, making it a discriminating factor for people who don’t have the opportunity to get vaccinated.
In contrast to that, many high-end and luxury airlines are rolling out options for vaccinated flights for their passengers. Vaccinated flights are where all the staff, the crew, and pilots, are vaccinated. Vaccinated flights help travellers fly safely and get a feel of the pre covid times.
Countries and governments
Many countries facing a surge in cases have imposed restrictions on international flights and passengers. Apart from the mandatory quarantine and testing, the possibility for compulsory vaccination is still there as it is upon the governments to control the virus’s spread.
Vaccine passports and certifications have helped travellers avoid the restrictions when travelling, making it a convenient choice for people who want to travel and explore just like the pre covid times.
For the question of whether some countries can impose such mandates or not, it is very likely.
The travel industry
The travel and tourism industry of the world wants to deliver the safest and pleasurable experience to its travellers after the big hit they took because of the pandemic. Vaccination helps travellers avoid quarantine and other restrictions when entering a new country, making it favourable for the travel industry.
The general public
There are two schools of thought when coming to the opinions of the general public. People who have already received the vaccination would prefer only vaccinated flights, while others would feel unfair.
Imagine an Indian student stuck in the USA and hasn’t met his family for this long. A person like this would constantly search for Direct flights from Delhi to USA that fit into his budget. Although some cheapairlines options are affordable, the compulsion for vaccination would bring that person back to zero.
The final verdict
The answer would be maybe. There haven’t been any concrete guidelines to indicate whether vaccination could be made compulsory for flying or not in 2021. But the benefits and opportunities it presents for the public, especially those who like to travel, are innumerous. It is a safe bet to expect that vaccination could be adopted as the final solution to get back to the pre covid times.