Spain is once again welcoming tourists this summer.
As lockdowns begin to lift across Europe, many tourism-dependent nations are quickly turning their attention to how quickly they can once again welcome visitors. Italy, Iceland, Greece and more have already announced their plans, but one of the UK’s favourite spots for sun-seekers has just reopened the borders, as Spain is now allowing UK residents to visit – and you won’t need to self-isolate upon arrival.
Spain was, along with Italy and the UK, one of the European countries worst-hit by the virus, but a strict and prolonged lockdown has helped the government gain control of the virus in recent months. Whilst there are still a number of active cases in the nation, the current measures and the importance of tourism to the economy has prompted the Spanish government to let tourists into the country once more.
Foreign Affairs Minister Arancha González Laya, speaking to the BBC, revealed that certain measures would be in place for UK visitors, but they wouldn’t include a quarantine amongst them. She stated there would be a “triple check”, composed of recording the country of origin, registering a point of contact in Spain, and a temperature check upon arrival. With an estimated 80 million tourists visiting Spain each year (pre-pandemic), the tourist industry has the potential to boost the Spanish economy hugely – and with the likes of Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia easily accessible once more, UK visitors are likely to head for the beaches.
It’s important to remember that whilst there won’t be any quarantine upon arrival in Spain, anyone entering the UK currently needs to quarantine for 14 days. That rule has come under significant pressure from MPs, airlines, and businesses, and is up for review on June 29. However, the BBC did note that the UK government is working on securing “travel corridors” for quarantine-free travel in both direction, with Portugal, France, Italy, Greece and Spain – so hopefully the process of going on holiday will return to normality soon. In the meantime, the Foreign Office is still advising against non-essential international travel, so if you’re making holiday plans right now, it’s perhaps an idea to plan for the worst and hope for the best. Still, nice to know we’ve got options if and when we’re able to jet off this year!
Also published on Medium.