Those in the tourism industry in the European Union and the United States are desperate to get increasing numbers of visitors from the other side of the Atlantic Ocean over to take advantage of their offerings and improve their financial situations.
As a result, government officials in the EU and U.S. are looking to come to some sort of related agreement, such as accepting each other’s vaccine passports.
However, it does not look that this is going to happen at any point in the near future.
The largest stumbling block appears to be the lack of federally mandated vaccination passports in the U.S. This idea was ruled out by White House officials in April; they added that they wanted to continue to protect the privacy and rights of American citizens. Although four states – Hawaii, California, Louisiana and New York – do offer a vaccination passport of sorts, that will not allow an agreement to be made between the U.S. as a whole and the EU.
However, the EU is said to be progressing towards agreements to accept each other’s vaccination passports with other countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada. In fact, tourism and government officials are hoping that EU’s vaccine passports will be recognized in Canada by the time that country is expected to reopen to EU visitors in September.
The EU vaccine passport is in the process of being introduced to every country within that bloc in addition to others that are not but are part of the Schengen Area: Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Citizens and legal permanent residents of these countries may get an EU vaccination passport now or in the near future.
Meanwhile, American tourists looking to experience European culture are enjoying an increasing number of reopenings across the EU while their counterparts are not able to make the opposite journey and enter the U.S. for nonessential reasons – e.g. to visit the Grand Canyon, Disney World or the Statue of Liberty. American officials even recently reiterated that reopening the U.S. to European tourists will not happen anytime soon due to the spread of the delta variant.