Pandemic Navigator, which simulates day-by-day immunity growth. “That’s good news for the domestic market, but in the context of international travel, we do have to realize that it’s not just about one country — it’s a country at the other end as well.”

Factoring in the spotty vaccine rollout across the pond, Mr. Usman said it’s reasonable to assume that Europe’s herd immunity will lag several months behind the United States. Over the next several months, he added, European countries will follow in Iceland’s footsteps and open individually, complete with their own regulations about vaccinations, testing and quarantines. To spur travel across the continent this summer, the European Union is considering adopting a vaccine certificate for its own residents and their families.

“It’s not going to be a binary open-or-shut,” Mr. Usman said. “Countries are going to start getting more selective about who they’re going to start letting in.”

Italy’s numbers — plus new lockdowns and growing Covid variants — seem to be stifling optimism; Hopper flight searches from the United States to Italy have remained relatively flat.

For now, Ms. Lieberman, of Skylark, has adopted a “beyond the boot” mind-set: “Our theory is that if you’re willing to go beyond the boot — meaning, Italy — there will be fabulous, desirable summer destinations for you to take advantage of.”

Portugal surged in January but has recently eased lockdown measures as infection rates have slowed. The country is now aiming for a 70 percent vaccination rate this summer.

American interest in Portugal is spiking in response. In the first week of March, following an announcement that Portugal could welcome tourists from Britain as soon as mid-May, Hopper searches on flights from the United States to Lisbon rose 63 percent. (That’s not far behind Athens, for which travel searches shot up 75 percent in the same time period.)

will next month start nonstop service between Boston and Reykjavik — and resume its Iceland service from New York City and Minneapolis.

“Unless demand spikes rapidly enough to outpace the increase in supply, flash sales can be found as airlines attempt to entice travelers to return amid piecemeal easings of travel restrictions,” said Mr. Damodaran. Icelandair, for example, is running sales on flights and packages through April 13.

And with prices for summer flights to Europe still relatively low in general — down by more than 10 percent from 2019, according to Hopper — experts see little downside in penciling in a trip.

“If you’re willing to take some risk, plan early and lock in your preferred accommodations and ideal itineraries,” Ms. Lieberman said. “But of course we caution you to be prepared to have to move deposits and dates if it comes to that.”

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Vaccine Passports, Covid’s Next Political Flash Point

The next major flash point over coronavirus response has already provoked cries of tyranny and discrimination in Britain, protests in Denmark, digital disinformation in the United States and geopolitical skirmishing within the European Union.

The subject of debate: vaccine passports — government-issued cards or smartphone badges stating that the bearer has been inoculated against the coronavirus.

The idea is to allow families to reunite, economies to restart and hundreds of millions of people who have received a shot to return to a degree of normalcy, all without spreading the virus. Some versions of the documentation might permit bearers to travel internationally. Others would allow entry to vaccinated-only spaces like gyms, concert venues and restaurants.

While such passports are still hypothetical in most places, Israel became the first to roll out its own last week, capitalizing on its high vaccination rate. Several European countries are considering following. President Biden has asked federal agencies to explore options. And some airlines and tourism-reliant industries and destinations expect to require them.

wrote in Scientific American. But with vaccines distributed unequally by race, class and nationality, “it is not obvious that they are ethical.”

Still, there are clear upsides: grandparents reuniting with out-of-town grandchildren; sports, concerts and other events partly but safely returning; resumption of international travel and some tourism; businesses reopened without putting workers at undue risk.

All of that is why, Drs. Hassoun and Herlitz wrote, vaccine documents “may be inevitable.”

Some countries require proof of vaccination — for example, against yellow fever — to enter. So do schools and day-care facilities in many American states.

higher rates. In Western countries, those communities tend to be white and well-off.

This evokes an uncomfortable image: professional-class white people disproportionately allowed into shops, baseball games and restaurants, with people of color and members of the working classes disproportionately kept out. If workplaces require proof of vaccination, it could tilt employment as well.

“If vaccines become a passport to doing different things, we’re going to see the communities that have been already hardest hit by Covid being left behind,” said Nicole A. Errett, a University of Washington public health expert.

said that they hope to set a policy this summer for accepting vaccine passports.

urging governments to wait for international standards on the passports before opening up travel, lest uneven standards lead to unsafe practices or geopolitical gamesmanship.

“A challenge since the beginning has been getting countries to do what’s best for the world instead of what’s best for people inside of their borders,” Dr. Errett said.

Witness the maneuvering within the European Union, whose 27 countries share long borders but have starkly different economic needs and vaccination rates.

Southern European states like Spain and Greece, which rely on tourism, are pushing for the bloc to adopt the documents. German and French officials have expressed reservations, at least for now. Their countries have lower vaccination rates, meaning that travel restrictions would put their residents at a relative disadvantage.

When Britain’s foreign secretary speculated recently that proof of vaccination might be required for pubs and stores, a lawmaker in his own party, Mark Harper, retorted, “I don’t think you want to require people to have to have a particular medical procedure before they can go about their day-to-day life.”

California’s vaccine struggle, over whether to tighten school requirements after measles and whooping cough outbreaks highlighted the state’s low immunization rates, offers a worrying preview.

one-third of Americans, in one poll, predominantly Republicans — are merely hesitant. The push to achieve herd immunity will depend on that third.

One problem: There is no agreement on the primary purpose of a vaccine passport program.

Governments typically talk about them as a way to open up economies. Individuals, as a way to re-enter normal life. Public health experts, as a way to reduce transmissions.

Those goals align, but imperfectly. At some point, the authorities have to prioritize.

Dr. Errett ticked through implementation questions, broadly unknown, that could force an answer. Would you need two doses to get the document or just one? Do Russian- or Chinese-made vaccines qualify? What are the rules for religious or medical opt-outs? Are some activities restricted to card-carriers until herd immunity, just until infections fall below a certain line — or forever?

“We need to be cognizant of the costs and benefits,” she said, and not just to adjust as we go, but for “the precedent we’re setting.”

“We pandemic people,” she said, “have been saying it since the beginning: We don’t expect this to be the last pandemic that we see.”

Matina Stevis-Gridneff contributed reporting from Brussels.

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When There’s One Covid Rule Book for Locals, and Another for Tourists

MADRID — Óscar Robles Álvarez yearned to celebrate Easter this year with his family in his hometown in northeastern Spain, which he has not visited since Christmas 2019.

Instead, he will spend the holiday on Sunday in Madrid, where he now lives, because of domestic travel restrictions imposed to stem another wave of Covid-19. He says he understands why the government recently extended those rules, but cannot fathom why no such travel ban applies to foreign tourists visiting his hometown, Getxo, a beach resort popular with surfers 80 miles from the border with France.

“This situation is completely unfair,” said Mr. Robles Álvarez, 50, who worked in finance but is currently jobless. “Citizens are being asked to behave responsibly by politicians who themselves decide completely incoherent Covid rules.”

In the prelude to Easter, a debate in Spain about whether double standards are being applied to contain Covid-19 has been intensifying. The polemic is echoed in other European countries, where the authorities have also restricted internal travel while allowing their citizens to go abroad and permitting foreign tourists to enter and move about more freely.

a digital certificate that could ease tourism this summer, including internal travel within member states.

“Given that transmission and risk are similar for national and cross-border journeys, member states should ensure there is coherence between the measures applied to the two types of journey,” said Christian Wigand, a commission spokesman.

tough rules in place restricting movement across the country. Residents are allowed to leave their town — or their house in the more affected regions — only for work, health reasons or other reasons deemed necessities.

But the government has allowed Italians to travel for tourism to most European countries, including France, Germany and Spain, only asking them to get a negative test 48 hours before their return.

A spokesman for Italy’s health minister said the risk of contagion from international travel with restrictions was lower than that of allowing free movement between domestic regions. One reason for that, he said, is volume — it is easier and cheaper for large numbers of people to travel domestically — adding that it would also be virtually impossible to enforce quarantines on travel between regions.

The Italian hotel association, Federalberghi, was among those accusing the government of double standards.

told a news conference in March that the country’s travel rules were incongruous and hard to explain.

Not helping matters, the European Union has also struggled with its vaccine rollout; Spain and Italy have both inoculated only about 11 percent of their populations. In comparison, Britain has given shots to 46 percent and the United States 29 percent, according to data from The New York Times.

apologized last week after she dropped an unpopular plan to extend a shutdown over the Easter vacation.

added hundreds of Easter holiday flights between Germany and Spain.

Laura Malone, the communications manager for Riu, a Spanish hotel operator with headquarters on Majorca, said there had been “an exponential rise in our bookings.” She said that the company had reopened two hotels on Majorca and that 90 percent of the reservations were coming from Germans.

The response to the pandemic has also become more fragmented in Spain because regional administrations rather than the central government have been setting most of the lockdown rules since the summer.

Before a local election in May, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, leader of the Madrid region and member of the center-right Popular Party, has taken to social media to criticize the economic restrictions of the Socialist-led national government. She has encouraged foreigners to visit the capital and portrayed the city’s bars and stores as bastions of freedom in comparison with other regions’ tougher restrictions.

This past weekend, the newspaper El País published on its front page a photograph of partying after the 11 p.m. curfew in the streets of central Madrid, and the images spread quickly on social media.

opera house, particularly because cultural offerings are more restricted in their own cities.

Teresa Buquerín, who runs a hotel in the medieval town of Ayllón, expressed mixed feelings about only having 25 percent of her rooms booked so far for Easter when she would normally have domestic tourists from the capital to fill her establishment. Ayllón is about 85 miles north of Madrid, but it is on the other side of a regional border that residents of the capital cannot cross under the pandemic restrictions now in place.

Madrid is “our economic engine,” Ms. Buquerín said, adding. “I would certainly always welcome people from Madrid, but only as long as they have been respecting the same safety rules as us, which is not what seems to have been happening.”

After keeping her hotel shut for four months until mid-March, she added, “It would be disastrous if I had to close again the week after Easter because of a new Covid problem.”

Emma Bubola contributed reporting from Rome.

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Cautiously, Britain Begins Relaxing Strict Lockdown Rules

This time, Britain’s latest reopening is unfolding in steps — the first of which was a return to schools — followed by several weeks to measure the impact of each relaxation on the spread of the virus. In early April, Mr. Johnson plans to outline his latest thinking on travel and “Covid passports,” a form of certification for those who are inoculated or have recently tested negative.

Further reinforcing Britain’s vaccine rollout, Mr. Johnson announced that the British drug giant GlaxoSmithKline had agreed to manufacture up to 60 million doses of a vaccine developed by Novavax, a biotechnology company based in Gaithersburg, Md., at a factory in northeast England.

Scientists and public health experts generally backed the government’s latest easing, given that it is incremental and encourages mixing outdoors, where the risk of transmission is far lower than in confined spaces.

But they warned about potential vulnerabilities, like the South African variant of the virus, which is fueling the latest wave of infections in Europe and shows signs of resistance to the AstraZeneca vaccine, the one most commonly used in Britain.

“If we didn’t have the variants, I would see us as being in a very strong position,” said Devi Sridhar, head of the global public health program at the University of Edinburgh. “But we have an Achilles’ heel because if a variant develops among vulnerable people, we could be back in a very precarious situation.”

Part of the problem, she said, was Britain’s patchy approach to travel. The government has placed 35 countries on a “red list,” which requires travelers to quarantine in a hotel for 10 days. But it has stopped short of adding France, a high-risk country, because of the headache of dealing with truck drivers transporting freight across the channel.

“Either do all countries, or do no countries,” Dr. Sridhar said. “This selective approach is a little silly because you’re only delaying the problem.”

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E.U. Proposes Covid-19 Certificate for Travelers

BRUSSELS — Pressed by member states desperate to save the summer tourist season, the European Union on Wednesday proposed a Covid-19 certificate that would allow people to travel more freely.

The proposed document, known as a Digital Green Certificate, would allow European residents and their family members to travel at will across the bloc, so long as they have proof of Covid-19 vaccination, a negative test result or a documented recovery from the virus.

The certificates would be free and available in digital or paper format.

“The Digital Green Certificate will not be a precondition to free movement, and it will not discriminate in any way,” Didier Reynders, the bloc’s top official for justice, said, adding that the aim was to “gradually restore free movement within the E.U. and avoid fragmentation.”

Freedom of movement is the cornerstone of the bloc, but travel restrictions are traditionally under the purview of national governments. The commission’s plan is yet another bid to coordinate what is now a chaotic patchwork of disparate national measures, significantly hindering travel within the previously borderless zone.

the largest European countries suspended the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine over reports of a few cases of serious blood clots among people who received it. The suspension could be lifted soon, but severe production problems have made millions fewer AstraZeneca doses available.

The problems have been an embarrassment for the European Union and its executive arm, the Commission, which took control of the procurement process, although member states are responsible for issuing vaccinations.

But Europeans, held under one of the longest and strictest lockdowns in the world, are experiencing a deep pandemic fatigue, further complicating the way out of the crisis.

The commission also laid out a long-term strategy to gradually lift the lockdown measures, conditional upon each country’s epidemiological situation. A judgment would be made based on simulations by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, the commission said.

“The situation with the virus in Europe is still very challenging,” said Stella Kyriakides, the bloc’s top health official. “It is only through a joint approach that we can return safely to full free movement in the E.U.”

The proposal does not change Europe’s current rules on external travel. The bloc has restricted nonessential travel from countries outside the bloc, with a small number of exceptions, based on infection rates. Travelers who are not E.U. residents could receive a Covid-19 certificate, but only if their visit to Europe falls under one of those exceptions.

In the meantime, some member nations are striking out on their own, eager to reopen to non-European tourists. Greece has already signed an agreement with Israel and is working on similar deals with 10 more countries, including Britain, Canada and the United States.

The Commission’s plan would need to be approved by the European Parliament and a majority of member states. The aim is to make the certificates operational by mid-June, in order to salvage the summer season.

The initial push for some form of a vaccination certificate has come from by countries heavily dependent on tourism, led by Greece, while others, including France and Germany, have been wary of the potential for discrimination between vaccinated and non-vaccinated Europeans, as well as privacy issues.

National governments have also been split over which vaccines should be included in the pass. Hungary is inoculating its citizens with the Russian Sputnik vaccine and the shot made by Sinopharm, a Chinese state-owned company, even though neither has been approved by the European Medicines Agency, and other nations are looking to do the same.

In a spirit of compromise, the commission proposed that all shots approved by the E.U. regulator should be included in the pass, but gave member states discretionary powers to recognize vaccines that have not yet been authorized in Europe.

Many countries reintroduced border controls and began requiring quarantine for arriving travelers in recent months, as more contagious virus variants began spreading rapidly, a gloomy replication of the pandemic’s first wave. Some countries, like Belgium, which shares borders with four other E.U. nations, completely banned nonessential travel.

Any discussions of the Covid-19 certificate are likely to focus on data protection and privacy rights, said Juan Fernando López Aguilar, a European socialist lawmaker from Spain. “We need to make sure that every step we make is made compatible with the fundamental rights of the citizen,” he said.

Guntram Wolff, the director of Bruegel, a research group focused on economic policy in Europe, said that verifying vaccination and testing was “absolutely essential” for reopening the tourism sector.

“Once a person is vaccinated and the evidence shows that he or she cannot transmit the virus anymore, how can you justify restricting his or her basic freedoms?” he asked.

“The E.U. has been slow, since countries disagree on what travel should be allowed,” he said. “They even disagree on which vaccines are safe.”

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Europe’s Plan to Save Summer: A Covid-19 Travel Certificate

BRUSSELS — Pressed by member states desperate to save the summer tourist season, the European Union on Wednesday proposed a Covid-19 certificate that would allow people to travel more freely.

The proposed document, known as a Digital Green Certificate, would allow European residents and their family members to travel at will across the bloc, so long as they have proof of Covid-19 vaccination, a negative test result or a documented recovery from the virus.

The certificates would be free and available in digital or paper format.

“The Digital Green Certificate will not be a precondition to free movement, and it will not discriminate in any way,” Didier Reynders, the bloc’s top official for justice, said, adding that the aim was to “gradually restore free movement within the E.U. and avoid fragmentation.”

Freedom of movement is the cornerstone of the bloc, but travel restrictions are traditionally under the purview of national governments. The commission’s plan is yet another bid to coordinate what is now a chaotic patchwork of disparate national measures, significantly hindering travel within the previously borderless zone.

the largest European countries suspended the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine over reports of a few cases of serious blood clots among people who received it. The suspension could be lifted soon, but severe production problems have made millions fewer AstraZeneca doses available.

The problems have been an embarrassment for the European Union and its executive arm, the Commission, which took control of the procurement process, although member states are responsible for issuing vaccinations.

But Europeans, held under one of the longest and strictest lockdowns in the world, are experiencing a deep pandemic fatigue, further complicating the way out of the crisis.

The commission also laid out a long-term strategy to gradually lift the lockdown measures, conditional upon each country’s epidemiological situation. A judgment would be made based on simulations by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, the commission said.

“The situation with the virus in Europe is still very challenging,” said Stella Kyriakides, the bloc’s top health official. “It is only through a joint approach that we can return safely to full free movement in the E.U.”

The proposal does not change Europe’s current rules on external travel. The bloc has restricted nonessential travel from countries outside the bloc, with a small number of exceptions, based on infection rates. Travelers who are not E.U. residents could receive a Covid-19 certificate, but only if their visit to Europe falls under one of those exceptions.

In the meantime, some member nations are striking out on their own, eager to reopen to non-European tourists. Greece has already signed an agreement with Israel and is working on similar deals with 10 more countries, including Britain, Canada and the United States.

The Commission’s plan would need to be approved by the European Parliament and a majority of member states. The aim is to make the certificates operational by mid-June, in order to salvage the summer season.

The initial push for some form of a vaccination certificate has come from by countries heavily dependent on tourism, led by Greece, while others, including France and Germany, have been wary of the potential for discrimination between vaccinated and non-vaccinated Europeans, as well as privacy issues.

National governments have also been split over which vaccines should be included in the pass. Hungary is inoculating its citizens with the Russian Sputnik vaccine and the shot made by Sinopharm, a Chinese state-owned company, even though neither has been approved by the European Medicines Agency, and other nations are looking to do the same.

In a spirit of compromise, the commission proposed that all shots approved by the E.U. regulator should be included in the pass, but gave member states discretionary powers to recognize vaccines that have not yet been authorized in Europe.

Many countries reintroduced border controls and began requiring quarantine for arriving travelers in recent months, as more contagious virus variants began spreading rapidly, a gloomy replication of the pandemic’s first wave. Some countries, like Belgium, which shares borders with four other E.U. nations, completely banned nonessential travel.

Any discussions of the Covid-19 certificate are likely to focus on data protection and privacy rights, said Juan Fernando López Aguilar, a European socialist lawmaker from Spain. “We need to make sure that every step we make is made compatible with the fundamental rights of the citizen,” he said.

Guntram Wolff, the director of Bruegel, a research group focused on economic policy in Europe, said that verifying vaccination and testing was “absolutely essential” for reopening the tourism sector.

“Once a person is vaccinated and the evidence shows that he or she cannot transmit the virus anymore, how can you justify restricting his or her basic freedoms?” he asked.

“The E.U. has been slow, since countries disagree on what travel should be allowed,” he said. “They even disagree on which vaccines are safe.”

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The Relief Bill Will Save Tens of Thousands of Airline and Airport Jobs

The pandemic relief bill that President Biden signed Thursday afternoon will protect tens of thousands of jobs in the aviation industry, which is likely to struggle for some time even as vaccinations accelerate.

After Congress this week approved the legislation, which includes $14 billion for airlines and an additional $9 billion for airports and other businesses, American Airlines and United Airlines told 27,000 employees that they could ignore the furlough notices they received earlier this year. The airlines had been preparing to cut those jobs when an earlier round of federal aid expired at the end of this month. The new bill extends that assistance for another six months.

“Thousands of frontline workers will now receive paychecks and health care through September, which is especially critical while vaccine distribution continues to ramp up,” United’s chief executive, Scott Kirby, said in a statement on social media.

The relief package, which Mr. Biden has said is needed to protect the economy and workers and many Republican lawmakers have criticized as excessive, is the third to provide funding to keep airline workers employed since the pandemic began. Last March, Congress provided passenger airlines $25 billion in loans and another $25 billion in payroll grants. It renewed the payroll funding in December with another $15 billion and again this week.

The bill passed this week also sets aside $1 billion for aviation contractors and $8 billion for airports to help them operate normally, limit the spread of the virus and pay workers and service their debts. In exchange for the aid, airports, contractors and airlines are banned from large layoffs through September.

The aviation and travel industry has been among the hardest hit by the pandemic. A year ago, the number of people flying started to plummet as the virus spread widely and government officials restricted or discouraged travel. By early April, the number of people flying every day had dropped 96 percent compared with a year earlier.

Travel has recovered somewhat since then. An average of about a million people have been screened at airport security checkpoints each day over the past week, just over half as many as were screened over the same period in 2019, according to Transportation Security Administration data.

Still, airlines are losing $150 million a day on average, according to Airlines for America, an association that represents American, United and the other major carriers. The widespread distribution of vaccines has given the industry hope for a rebound, but airlines are expected to continue to lose money through the summer, and most industry analysts and executives don’t expect travel to recover to 2019 levels until 2023 or 2024.

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