Gold Medal Travel will launch a US-focused marketing campaign tomorrow, and claimed bookings for America holidays have risen sharply since Monday, despite continuing uncertainty over a border reopening date.
The White House announced on Monday that it will allow double vaccinated Brits – and citizens of several other countries – to enter the country from an unspecified date in November.
Arriving passengers will also need to present a negative PCR test.
Further details have not been disclosed with question marks still hanging over the exact date when the travel ban will be lifted and whether US authorities will recognise the AstraZeneca jab.
White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr Anthony Fauci yesterday said he foresaw ‘no problem’ with AZ but stressed the decision rested with the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The CDC has not approved the AZ vaccine in America.
But the development has continued to be welcomed by the industry, with Virgin Atlantic among the airlines reporting a sales surge.
Gold Medal claimed the US has accounted for 40% of bookings since Monday, up from 25% prior to the announcement, with a third of new sales for 2021 departures. It said a US marketing campaign will launch tomorrow, while agent-focused offers are being distributed via social media and email.
The firm said it will also provide agents with a dedicated US social media content library that they can use to promote the US to clients.
Gold Medal Travel Managing Director Lisa McAuley said: “Monday’s announcement was obviously very good news for us. Even though the US remained one of our top sellers throughout the pandemic, the prospect of the borders reopening from November has given travellers the confidence to book sooner – and in many cases bring forward plans and look to travel in 2021.”
She added: “It’s been great to see our phones ringing and enquiries come in, and our teams at their busiest for a long time. Critical for us now is ensuring agents have the tools they need to inspire their customers and convert the increased interest into bookings.”