Holders of the UK-wide We’re Good to Go consumer mark – which includes many coach operators – can be automatically issued with the international Safe Travels stamp from the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), VisitBritain has announced.

We’re Good to Go was launched in June 2020 by VisitEngland in partnership with the tourism boards of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It has been recognised by WTTC as meeting the Council’s international global standardised health and hygiene protocols and for its role in supporting the recovery of the UK tourism sector.

Safe Travels stamp easy to obtain by We’re Good to Go businesses

VisitBritain is coordinating the Safe Travels rollout in the UK on behalf of WTTC. We’re Good to Go-registered businesses can log in to their online account to download the Safe Travels stamp. Any that are not part of We’re Good to Go can apply through the usual process. They can indicate within that if they wish to use the Safe Travels stamp.

Over 44,000 UK businesses are part of We’re Good to Go. Being part of the scheme demonstrates that the organisation concerned adheres to the latest government and public health guidance; has carried out a COVID-19 risk assessment; and has in place the required processes to aid social distancing and cleanliness.

VisitBritain CEO Sally Balcombe says that the Safe Travels stamp “serves to reinforce that ‘ring of confidence’ for visitors that UK tourism businesses… have clear processes in place to welcome them back safely as travel restrictions can be lifted.”

Incoming tourism prediction bleak despite Safe Travels stamp

While the Safe Travels mark demonstrates UK tourism businesses’ approach to safety to visitors from other nations, separate work carried out by VisitBritain shows that the forecast for incoming tourism in 2021 remains grim.

It predicts 11.7m inbound visits in 2021, which is 29% of 2019’s level. £6.6bn will be spent by those tourists, which is 23% of the 2019 level. Both predictions represent “a significant downgrade” from the original forecast for 2021, which was carried out in December 2020.

Visits from Europe in 2021, at 9.3m, are predicted to be 34% of the 2019 level. At 2.5m, visits from long haul markets are expected to be 18% of the 2019 level.

VisitBritain cautions that there are some assumptions behind, and significant risks to, its forecast. Modelling assumes a start of recovery from May from some European markets, albeit slowly at first. VisitBritain does not expect inbound tourism to have recovered to “even close to normal levels” by the end of 2021.