The UK’s government’s handling of international travel regulations has been dubbed as more “Little Britain” than Global Britain by pilot’s association BALPA.

The organisation is calling on the government to work with other travel industry unions and trade bodies to find a practical, workable way forward to opening up international travel at an Aviation Restart Summit. In a statement issued to media, the organisation said: “As the Government is clearly incapable of effectively regulating international travel, BALPA is now demanding a round table discussion with the Transport Secretary, Home Secretary, Chancellor and Prime Minister.”

Referencing media coverage of five hour queues at the UK border over the weekend, BALPA said the hold ups were “not the fault of Border Force staff on duty.” Instead, the organisation placed the blame on the Government’s “shambolic border rules with wholly overblown and complex requirements for testing and quarantine.”

Complex regulations “pull up the drawbridge” to global travel

The statement added: “These are then made more difficult by complex traffic light systems and a plethora of private sector, rip off, unregulated testing companies. Government has not only reduced the UK’s international aviation sector to a shadow of its once world beating strength; even at this level the Government’s shameless inability to implement an efficient border system is shocking.”

BALPA’s Acting General Secretary Martin Chalk said: “The United Kingdom was a great global trading nation, built on a world class aviation industry. Government decisions have seemingly set about destroying the foundations of global Britain by an apparent deliberate undermining of the aviation industry.

“Unless we can talk some sense into them, at an industry round table conference, we might as well pull up the drawbridge and sink into a box set of Little Britain!”

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