It is essential for people’s mental health that travel and tourism reopens this summer.

Source: IATA 

Travelling is more than a holiday


Travelling is about opening up to other cultures, ideas, and perspectives. It keeps us connected: reuniting family and friends across borders. Freedom of movement is a right, not a privilege. Travel means learning and growing through education and exchange programmes. It helps create a multi-cultural, tolerant, and accepting European society. It also reconnects with nature for a much-needed dose of vitamin D.

Since the closure of borders, more than 30% of Europeans report they have been negatively impacted by missing a key moment in their lives. A timely restart for air travel and tourism means finally being able to reconnect with our families, embrace different cultures and reunite with friends across our continent.

A much-needed boost to our wellbeing

Countless studies have shown that travel positively affects our health & wellbeing thanks to its ability to reconnect us with nature, loved ones, and most importantly, ourselves. Travel relieves our stress and anxiety while enhancing our energy and creativity.

  • People who feel lonelier since the beginning of this pandemic are up to 10 times more at risk for depression, anxiety, and sleep problems (Source: WEF). In fact, more than half of young people across the world have developed signs of depression and anxiety as a result (Source: Youth Forum).
  • Making plans to travel and having something to look forward to makes people feel more relaxed and happier long before the actual trip.
  • Travel gives everyone a chance to spend time outdoors and connect with nature, especially for people who live in the city. A study shows that spending at least 120 minutes in nature improves your health and wellbeing. 
  • European workers’ anxiety and stress levels have also increased significantly during the pandemic, resulting in a much higher risk of burnout (Source: KeksnCNC). Employees need a break to relieve this stress and combat the monotony of this past year. Travelling can be a cure for these lockdown blues. It is an opportunity to recharge. Our newfound freedom will not only increase our happiness, it will also result in us contributing towards a healthy European recovery. 
Looking forward to a trip directly impacts your happiness
56% of Europeans are planning to take a trip by the end of August
A cornerstone of European society

Borders have been completely open between most European countries since 1985: no passports, visas, and border inspections are required. Europeans have enjoyed the freedom to move, work and travel freely anywhere in Europe for years. As a result, many Europeans have family and friends who live abroad. 38% report that travel restrictions making them unable to see family was what had impacted them the most.

  • More than 65% of Europeans travelled abroad at least once in 2019, and other EU countries are the top destination (Source: Eurostat). Even before COVID-19, more than seven out of ten Europeans preferred to stay in Europe for personal trips. However, during the past year, borders shut, and Europe came to a complete standstill.
  • The impact of COVID-19 on international travel continues. Data shows an 85% fall in international arrivals in Europe in January 2021 compared to the previous year. Furthermore, passenger traffic across the EU/EEA/Swiss airport network was down by 89% in March 2021 compared to March 2019 (Source: The United Nations World Tourism Organisation – UNWTO).
  • In 2018 the travel sector contributed € 441.1 billion to the EU economy or over 10% of total EU GDP, providing over 27 million jobs, which is 11.6% of all EU workers. 

How can I get involved? ​

Help us spread the word. Safe travel and tourism in Europe is both vital and possible this summer!

Ask your political representative or local authority to get involved in making this vision a reality! You can find some downloadable posts which are easy to share for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn here.