Skift Take

Less than two months after opening up to Americans for non-essential travel, the EU is reversing course with new expected travel restrictions. News of this latest ban will throw more chaos into the future of travel companies already bracing for a tough fall.

The alarming spread of the Covid Delta variant across the United States is prompting the European Union to pull the U.S. from its “safe” list of countries for non-essential travel.

This would come less than two months after the U.S. was placed on the list, now leaving the hopes for rejuvenated travel business short-lived.

The EU decision, which has been under consideration by the governing body for weeks as U.S. infection rates exceeded those on the continent, could come as soon as Monday, according to media reports.

Editor’s Note: The EU did recommend to members on August 30 to remove the United States from safe travel lists.

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That U.S. travelers would be barred from traveling to Europe heading into the fall season does not bode well for travel companies that tried to make the most of tourist traffic this summer. Several U.S. airlines have also adjusted financial forecasts lower for the fall based on the spread of the Delta variant across the states.

Expect the stocks of U.S. travel companies to tumble once the European Union announces its decision.

The U.S. continues to maintain its ban on all non-essential travel from Europe.

Indeed, travel recovery was already showing signs of strain, according to Skift Research’s Recovery Index tracking 22 countries. 

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Tags: coronavirus, Delta variant

Photo credit: Passenger traffic coming through Heathrow Airport (pictured) will slow considerably if the EU places a ban on the U.S. for non-essential travel. Matthew Childs / Reuters

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