European Union unveils plan to save summer vacations amid coronavirus pandemic

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The European Union unveiled Wednesday its plan to help citizens across the 27 nations salvage their summer vacations after months of tough coronavirus confinement and to hopefully resurrect Europe’s badly battered tourism industry.

Around 150,000 people have died across Europe and Britain since the virus surfaced in northern Italy in February, but with the spread of the disease tapering off, people in many countries are cautiously venturing out of confinement to return to work and some schools are reopening.

A question on the minds of people, tour operators and the thousands of small businesses that depend on the tourism industry is whether the summer months this year will be reduced to a home-style “staycation.”

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In a series of guidelines, the EU’s executive arm, the European Commission, laid out its advice for lifting ID checks on hastily closed borders, helping to get airlines, ferries and buses running while ensuring the safety of passengers and crew, and preparing health measures for hotels to reassure clients.

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But a big question remains: will the countries of the world’s biggest trading bloc follow the advice?

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