The World Forum - April 22nd, 2024

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Canadian vaccine passport draws early mixed reaction from industry


After originally criticizing the idea, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has recently said Canada is joining other countries in “actively exploring” the concept of vaccine passports for international travel.

But what do those in Canada’s travel industry think?

Air Canada spokesperson Peter Fitzpatrick said “it is really premature to comment on vaccine passports because by and large this remains at the conceptual stage and there are insufficient substantive details.”

Still Fitzpatrick added: “Our immediate focus remains on testing. While vaccines hold great promise, we believe effective and robust testing is by far and away the most immediate and practical way to restore travel.”

Meanwhile, WestJet spokesperson Morgan Bell said:“Vaccination passports are an evolving subject that we are monitoring and evaluating as they are being trialed and implemented to understand if they could be a benefit to our operations and our guests.”

Charmaine Singh, the president and CEO of Toronto’s Reach Global Marketing with 20 plus years promoting tourism in the United States, Europe and Bermuda, says there are greater priorities than vaccine passports.

“We need to start the discussion around it but it’s not the answer because we need to focus on medical solutions,” said Singh, who’s held on to her full-time staff because of clients who honoured their commitments in Canada during the pandemic.