It’s not a secret that the tourism industry has been one of the hardest hit by a coronavirus world, thanks to the lockdowns and border closures that go with it. Many airlines have folded, thousands of jobs have been cut from those still running, and international travel won’t be back on the table until at least July 2021.
Which is why Qantas has launched a petition asking states with low levels of coronavirus to open up again. Specifically, the petition is asking for a national plan around border openings based on medical advice and an actual, set definition of what a COVID-19 “hotspot” actually is.
The airline encouraged their thousands of employees and suppliers to sign it, as well as asking other parts of the tourism industry to get involved — from airports to travel agents and tourism companies.
It’s not a surprising move from the airline, after CEO Alan Joyce and other business groups suggested the closures may have more to do with politics than health just last week.
“Nobody has an issue with the international borders being closed — that’s protected Australia,” Joyce said.
Nobody’s had an issue with the borders to Victoria being closed. But it’s very clear that we don’t have clear guidelines for when the borders will open, when they will close. So we have this situation where there are large numbers of states and territories that have zero cases and they’re not even open to each other”.
The “Safely Open Our Borders” online petition is asking those who sign it to share their postcodes and explain a little about the impact border closures has had on them personally.
“Australians love to travel,” reads the petition. “While it might be a while before we can fly overseas again, we’re lucky there are so many amazing destinations right here in our own backyard. Not to mention friends and family we long to see again. But that can only happen if our domestic borders are opened”.
(Lead Image: Unsplash / Joey Csunyo)
Kassia is the Editor of AWOL, and a straight-up travel addict. She was born without a sense of direction, yet an intense desire to explore the world. As such, she's lost 90% of the time but she's learned to roll with it. You can catch her latest adventures on Instagram @probably_kassia.