Re-Introduction of Pre-Departure Testing “Huge Blow to Travellers and an Already Devastated Travel Industry”

The re-introduction of pre-departure testing has come as a "huge blow to travellers and an already devastated travel industry" says Northern Ireland's ABTA spokesperson Heather Fielding

The re-introduction of pre-departure testing has come as a “huge blow to travellers and an already devastated travel industry” says Northern Ireland’s ABTA spokesperson Heather Fielding.

Heather Fielding, Northern Ireland’s ABTA spokesperson and Managing Director of Gallagher Travel said: “The re-introduction of pre-departure tests will be a huge blow to travellers and an already devastated travel industry, which has been the hardest hit sector throughout the crisis and which is now fast approaching the key booking season for next summer.

“While we have always been clear that public health must be the priority at this time, the Government and our local Executive must now step up to save jobs and businesses. The industry needs financial support, which recognises these measures will significantly weaken demand and the Chancellor must now consider the reintroduction of furlough for travel industry to avoid further job losses.

“Travellers must also be supported with measures taken to offset the cost of these additional tests by reducing the cost of PCR testing – including a price cap and the removal of VAT. It’s vitally important this decision is reversed as quickly as possible, in line with scientific and medical advice, as it is simply not possible for the travel industry to recover properly while this huge barrier to consumer confidence is in place.”

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