“We have learned from past crises that global standard protocols and consistency provides confidence for the traveler...”

By Alison Fox
June 11, 2020
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In an effort to assure future travelers around the globe, the World Travel & Tourism Council will certify hotels, cruise lines, tour operators that adhere to consistent health and safety standards.

The new safety designation — a Global Safety Stamp of Approval — comes as countries have begun to reopen their borders and air travel has started to gradually return. The safety stamp, which appears as a green circle with a company’s logo on it as well, will be backed by a comprehensive set of hygiene protocols for different industries, including enhanced sanitation and disinfection standards at hotels, mandating the use of face masks and limiting movement on planes, and having tour operators seek out venues that follow good sanitation practices.

“We have learned from past crises that global standard protocols and consistency provides confidence for the traveler,” Gloria Guevara, the WTTC president and CEO, said in a statement. “Our new global safety stamp is designed to help rebuild consumer confidence worldwide.”

So far, more than 1,200 companies and more than 80 destinations — including Cancun, Portugal, and Barcelona — have embraced the new protocols, according to the group.

“Now travelers will be able to recognize the businesses and destinations worldwide which have adopted the new set of global protocols that will encourage the return of ‘Safe Travels’ around the world,” Guevara added. “It will, in turn, help the Travel & Tourism sector to reopen for business and move in a coordinated approach.”

For its part, the United Nations World Tourism Organization has also backed the stamp, saying it will help with “restoring confidence” as travelers start to venture out into the world.

“This is key to build trust and we will only succeed if we work together,” Zurab Pololikashvili, the UNWTO secretary-general, said in a statement. “We are united in the common goal of tourism’s come-back to generate benefits going far beyond our sector. Trust and tourism will catalyze consumer demand, investments, and jobs, thus generating opportunities for all.”