It concerns one holiday, says director of the General Dutch Association of Travel Companies (ANVR) Frank Oostdam. He goes to a resort abroad where only people who participate in the experiment come, he says. “It is the very first step towards a normal or semi-normal summer.”
How many people are allowed to travel is still under discussion. “It will be a plane full.” Participants are not allowed to leave the resort.
The trip is the result of conversations about safe holidays, says Oostdam. “Our proposition is: if you book a package holiday, you can go on holiday more closely than if you book a ticket and accommodation yourself. We know the hotels, the airlines. We may refer to a car or bus holiday below.”
‘Prelude to a relaxed summer’
Petra Kok of TUI also says this. “We are travel organizations with package tours. That is important: you can then, unlike when you only buy a ticket, guide and monitor the trip. Hopefully this is the prelude to a relaxed summer.”
According to Oostdam, this is an important step. “Finally, the government is willing to take baby steps, back to normal. If you do it organized, maybe tourism vacations can prove that they are not helping to spread the virus.”
Oostdam calls the test unique. “I don’t know of any country that does anything with travel at the moment. We are very happy that it is happening. It is a small step, but very big for us.”
Where the journey will go has yet to be determined. “It is obvious that the destination is within the European Union. After that, we would like to scale up outside the European Union.” One thing is clear anyway: “It’s definitely going to be a sun destination. Not Iceland, no.”
That does not mean that the May holiday can be saved. “But I am very happy with the sounds from the ministry that, as it looks now, we are going to have a normal summer. So we like the summer holidays.”
The ANVR will soon provide more information about how to register.