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Published On: Mon, May 22nd, 2017

What Travel Professionals Should Know About Europe This Summer

Europe has unfortunately been in international news headlines recently or all the wrong reasons, namely their problems with security. While there have been significant price drops in the cost of travel throughout Europe, many travel agents and professionals are grappling with how they should advise their clients in the wake of potential security risks.

If you’re a travel agent or professional you probably have PI insurance and other legal safeguards in place, but even if you might be legally protected in the event a claim is filed against you, you want to be able to give your clients the best possible information from an ethical and personal standpoint as well.

So what should know about the news coming out of Europe this summer regarding not just security but general travel trends? How can you provide the best guidance, from a legal and general standpoint?

St. Peter’s Basilica photo/ Sébastien Bertrand from Paris, France

Flight Opportunities

If you’re a travel agent who works with clients in the U.S., it is worth knowing that there are many new flight routes available. This is leading more people to want to risk potential travel risks and go to Europe anyway, and as an agent, you should be aware of these increased routes.

For example, according to Travel + Leisure, there are 395 new ways to fly to Spain. There are also nonstop flights from Virgin Atlantic with routes from Seattle to London, and British Airways recently started service between New Orleans and London.

Laptop Ban

There was a proposed ban on laptops and tablets from Europe to the U.S., but following a high-profile meeting in Brussels, that was decided against. However, there is still a laptop ban in place that is enforced on flights to the U.S. from eight Muslim-majority countries. There is also a similar ban for large electronics from flights to the UK from six countries including Turkey, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia.

Warn your clients about the laptop ban, and keep up to date with it throughout the summer because there is still the potential it could be expanded or changed, depending on specific threats.

2011 photo/Jeremy Keith via wikimedia commons

Alternate Options

According to reports from the United Nations World Tourism Organization, there are Eastern European countries that are seeing big increases in tourism, so if your clients are looking for an alternative to Western Europe countries, they might consider these. Some of the most popular Eastern European destinations right now include Serbia, Slovenia, and Slovakia.

Security

Of course, it is ultimately up to your clients whether or not they travel to Europe this summer, but it is important to be abreast of what’s happening regarding security so you can present them with the facts when they come to you for advice.

The U.S. Department of State issued an alert on May 1 for general European travel and cited extremists continuing to focus on tourist locations.

Finally, it’s a good idea to have an understanding of the particular security climate in specific locations, and also to advise clients to consider travel insurance that would cover cancellation of their trip in the event of a safety issue or a large-scale attack.

Author: Carmelo Hannity

photo Ged Carroll

About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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Have Your Say
  1. It really is unfortunate that a minority spoils it for the majority in these types of situations. However good information for travelers and travel agents to advise their clients.

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