Americans are eager to get back to life post-pandemic, and for many, that means resuming their travel plans.
You may have a deluxe trip to the Palace of Versailles or an adventurous excursion to the Amalfi Coast on your itinerary.
But not so fast. An entire continent is banning American travelers… at least *for now.
As part of Europe’s reopening process, they are beginning to allow visitors into their countries beginning July 1.
Americans were getting excited to finally get their tickets to see the Louvre when the EU announced that our great nation is not on their guest list.
Ironically, China is on the approved list of welcomed travelers, but only as long as China returns the favor and puts Europe on their list of who’s who.
According to The NY Times, a group of EU senior diplomats in Brussels decided how they were going to reopen the “27-member bloc to commerce and tourism” after being shut-down for a grueling few months.
There are some bureaucratic technicalities that need to be ironed out before the official announcement, but diplomats don’t see any alterations being made.
The United States has been blasted in the media lately, even by our very own networks, as being the country with the highest number of COVID-related deaths.
This coverage has perpetuated fear among citizens and foreign friends alike.
But excluding the United States from entering some of the biggest names in tourism is only going to cripple the European economy.
For example, tourism in France makes up 7% of their GDP and employs over 2 million Parisians alone, The LA Times reports.
According to US government data, 7 million tourists visited Europe between June and August of last year, reminding many European Union countries that American tourism is vital and essential to maintaining the revenue they’ve become accustomed to.
Greece, who depends on tourism for a fifth of their economy, along with a few other countries such as Spain, are ignoring the European Union’s recommendations on banning American citizens and will provide screening services to ensure the safety of their residents instead.
It’s unclear the repercussions of opposing the EU’s directive, but it will likely be less an impact in comparison to losing millions in American revenue.
America has been working with the EU on finding a realistic and sensible alternative, but the EU seems firm in their position.
“We’ll work closely with our European friends, broadly, because I know there’s different views,” Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State, said during a virtual conference organized by the German Marshall Fund.
The New York Times reports the list of approved countries for European entry by the EU:
“The full list finalized on Friday includes Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, Andorra, San Marino, Monaco and the Vatican. China will be included if it also opens its borders to European Union travelers, as reciprocal reopening is one of the criteria used to make the final selection for the safe list.”
We may likely see more European countries refusing to abide by the American ban set forth by the EU because the fear of a very real collapse of a once-flourishing tourism industry and stable economy is greater than any consequence from the EU.
So while you might be on the naughty list now, seeing the enchanted hills of Germany’s Black Forest may not be completely impossible in the near future.