Too many rules and restrictions. | Gemma Andreu


IATA, the International Air Transport Association, has concluded its annual general meeting in Boston, and the loudest message to come out of the meeting is that confusion over travel restrictions is holding back recovery of the airline industry.

The IATA director general, Willie Walsh, said that "people want to fly". There is strong evidence of this, but "they can't fly because we have restrictions that are impeding international travel".

Joanna Geraghty, the president of JetBlue Airways, who hosted the meeting, observed that "governments haven't made it easy for airlines or for the travelling public to understand what the rules are to fly".

Willie Walsh insisted that "people are getting more and more frustrated with Covid-19 travel restrictions". "We are no longer dealing with the virus, we are dealing with government restrictions." Responding to an IATA survey which found that travellers can no longer put up with the chaos and confusion of regulations in different countries, he concluded that the situation is "a disaster".