Travel to Spain: Spain to require travelers from UK to show PCR test or be fully vaccinated | Society


From Thursday, Spain will require a negative PCR test or proof of full vaccination from UK travelers, due to concerns over the delta variant of the coronavirus.

Speaking in an interview on Monday with the Cadena SER radio network, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said: “The cumulative incidence rate in the UK has progressed negatively in recent weeks. It’s well over 150 cases [per 100,000 inhabitants] in 14 days, and that is why we have to take extra precaution with regard to the arrival of British tourists in our country.

The Socialist leader (POSE) said the new restrictions would come into effect in 72 hours “so UK tour operators and tourists can adjust to the new rules”. Conditions will particularly affect travelers to the Balearic Islands, which will be placed on the UK’s Green Travel List on June 30. The rest of Spain will remain on the orange list, requiring quarantine upon return.

Although Sánchez made specific reference to the Balearic Islands in his statements due to the expected influx of British arrivals to the archipelago, the move affects travel to all parts of Spain.

“We are going to apply to British tourists traveling to the Balearic Islands the same restrictions that we impose on the rest of Europe: they will either have to be fully vaccinated or have a negative PCR test,” he told the Cadena radio network. SER. .

Arenal beach in Palma de Mallorca in August 2020.Enrique Calvo / Reuters

The Balearic Islands were hoping to receive an influx of British visitors due to the relaxed restrictions.

The conditions described by Sánchez are not exactly the same as those governing travel across the European Union: in the latter space, it is also possible to present a certificate proving the cure of the coronavirus in the previous six months. And antigen tests are also accepted for travel within the EU.

For British tourists, there are two possibilities: a full vaccination with one of the vaccines authorized by the European Medicines Agency or the World Health Organization, the second dose being given at least 14 days before travel; or a negative PCR test carried out within 72 hours before arriving in Spain. This represents a change from Spain’s position, adopted just over a month ago, when the UK was on its list of countries whose nationals could enter the country freely.

The Balearic Islands are the only region that will move on the UK government’s green list of countries and territories, which are considered safe for travel. As of June 30, travelers from the UK will not have to self-quarantine for 10 days upon their return, although they will still need to take a Covid-19 test no later than the second day (and put in quarantine if the result is positive). A test is also required before travel.

The Balearic Islands, which include the popular islands of Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera, have always been a major destination for British tourists. In 2019, nearly four million of them stayed in the Mediterranean archipelago, mainly in Mallorca.

In 2019, nearly four million British nationals spent time in the Mediterranean archipelago, mainly in Mallorca

The rest of Spain will remain on the UK’s orange list. Passengers from Amber List countries must self-quarantine at home or where they are staying for 10 days, and additionally take a Covid-19 test no later than day 2 and on or after 8 day. A test is also required before travel.

The announcement of the new travel rules comes amid growing concern over the delta variant of the coronavirus, which accounts for 90% of cases in the UK, and according to the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC), is expected to account for 90% of all infections in Europe by the end of August.

According to the latest report from the Ministry of Health on variants, the delta strain is responsible for less than 1% of cases in Spain, but experts warn that this data is out of date as it can take up to four weeks to sequence new ones infections.

The move also comes as Spain struggles to contain a coronavirus outbreak linked to student vacations in Mallorca in the Balearic Islands. More than 800 cases in nine regions have so far been detected and more than 2,000 people are in quarantine. Last week, the incidence rate of the coronavirus increased for the first time since April 26. On Friday, the cumulative number of cases over 14 days per 100,000 population stood at 95, compared to 92.25 on Tuesday.

english version by Melissa Kitson and Susana Urra.

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