Spain will continue to ‘welcome’ Brits – tourism bosses insist holidays are ‘safe’

Spain: Balearics ‘as safe as anywhere in Europe’ says Bauza

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Spain’s tourism sector has been served a fresh blow with the news the UK Government will be axing the Balearic Islands from its green list. The popular holiday islands, home to Majorca, Ibiza and Mallorca, will join mainland Spain and the Canary Islands on the amber list.

The new rules, which come into force on July 19, will see unvaccinated Britons facing 10 days of mandatory quarantine upon their return home.

Despite the latest restrictions coming into force, Spain’s tourism ministers are encouraging British holidaymakers to push ahead with any travel plans they may have.

Javier Piñanes, director of the Spanish Tourist Office in the UK has said British visitors will “remain welcome”.

In a statement following the UK Government announcement, Mr Piñanes said: “The Balearic Islands continue to be a safe tourism destination that strictly adhere to safety protocols that have been established by the authorities.

“British visitors remain welcome in the Balearic Islands and Spain.”

The tourism boss also showed some confusion over the decision, pointing to low Covid cases in hospitals.

“We must respect the decision from the British government,” he said.

“We would highlight however that, according to Spain’s Ministry of Health, in the Balearic Islands, 3.85 percent of hospital beds are COVID related – based on data published on 13 July.

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“The majority of new cases are among younger age groups, specifically 12 to 19 and 20 to 29-year-olds and despite the increasing COVID rates, the hospitals in the Balearic Island archipelago are not under pressure.

“Likewise, there have been no fatalities reported due to COVID-19 in the Balearic Islands in the last seven days and there are strict safety and hygiene processes and measures in place.”

Despite this, the statistics were enough to push the Balearics back onto the amber list.

Regardless of their vaccination status, from July 19 those returning from any part of Spain will face two COVID-19 tests at their own expense.

Spain, including the Canary and Balearic Islands, also have in place their own entry requirements for UK arrivals.

On July 2, 2021, the Spanish government introduced the requirement for all arrivals to present either a negative COVID-19 test or evidence of being fully vaccinated.

Covid tests must have been taken within 48 hours prior to arrival.

The Spanish authorities are accepting PCR, TMA, LAMP or NEAR tests.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) explains: “Documents can be in either English, Spanish, French or German and in paper or electronic format. All documents must specify the name and surname of the passenger.”

Those who have been vaccinated can present evidence via the NHS COVID pass or an official NHS letter.

“Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status,” warns the FCDO.

Further requirements apply to those who have visited a “risk country”, as categorised by Spain or are travelling from mainland Spain to either the Canary or Balearics.

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