26 Apr, 2021 @ 18:15
3 mins read

Who is allowed in Spain at the moment and are hotels open? All your COVID-19 travel questions answered

WITH restrictions easing across the UK, people across the country are desperately waiting to hear when international travel can officially resume. 

With May 17 earmarked as the date that foreign trips could restart, lockdown-weary Brits are now thinking more and more about jetting away for some time in the sun. 

While foreign holidays are currently banned by the UK Government, ministers are expected to unveil the new traffic light system for England on May 7.

Counties will be placed on green, amber, or red lists to determine if you need to quarantine or undergo further tests when you’re back in the UK.

MASKED BACKLASH as Spain's Health Minister is forced to reconsider beach mask plans

Anyone travelling to countries awarded green list status will not have to isolate when they return.  

These rules will only affect people travelling from England to places abroad since devolved administrations in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales have the power to set their own timings for the easing of restrictions.

While it is still unknown whether Spain will be given the green light to English visitors, there are certain regions which are likely to be the first ones to welcome tourists thanks to their low COVID-19 infection rates and push for travel corridors and vaccine passport schemes.

With travellers desperate to understand what current conditions are in Spain, we thought we would help break it all down. We answer all your most- asked questions below. 

Spanish residents are able to enter Spain

Who is allowed into Spain at the moment? 

Since late October 2020, Spain has been placed under a nationwide State of Emergency with further mobility restrictions and curfews which remain in force. 

Only citizens and legal residents of the European Union, Schengen states, Andorra, Monaco, The Vatican (Holy See) and San Marino, and those who can demonstrate through documentary evidence an essential need to enter Spain, will be granted entry under current travel restrictions.

Tourists arrive in Spain Coronavirus airport

When will hotels be allowed to open in Spain to holidaymakers?

beach spain
Could Spain be welcoming back tourists by summer? PHOTO: Martin Woortman/ Unsplash

Currently hotels and B&Bs are allowed to be open in Spain and anyone can make a booking, regardless of nationality. That means it’s good news for forward-thinking Brits hoping to bag a deal – but make sure to speak with them about the accommodation refund policy in case your flights are cancelled or you are prohibited from travelling. 

When will foreign destination travel be allowed from the UK to Spain ?

This is the big question. The government has yet to confirm when non-essential travel can resume, and at the moment foreign holidays are still banned.

The lockdown roadmap states that the earliest that flights can restart is May 17.

Details are set to be announced soon of a new traffic light system – rating destinations as green, amber or red which will mean what sort of quarantine or restrictions will be required to visit those countries.

However, Spain has not yet announced when it will welcome Brits. 

Currently only those with EU passports or Spanish residency are permitted to enter the country. 

The good news is however that the country is ‘desperate to welcome’ UK visitors this summer.

Spain’s tourism minister Fernando Valdes said: ‘I think we will be ready here in Spain. We also think that the vaccination scheme in the UK is going pretty well, so hopefully we’ll be seeing this summer the restart of holidays.’

He added that certificates enabling holidaymakers to prove they have been vaccinated or recently tested are ‘going to help us’.

beach e
THING OF THE PAST? Benalmadena beach packed with British tourists (CREDIT: Olive Press)

What does the traffic light system mean for English travellers? 

It is understood that the green, amber, red list won’t be unveiled until early May, but insiders have predicted that popular European destinations such as Iceland, Gibraltar, Malta and Portugal could be placed on the green list.

At the moment it is thought due to the number of cases throughout Spain, the country is likely to be classified as an amber destination. 

The traffic light plan will be as follows :- 

Green destinations: passengers will not need to quarantine when they return to England, but must take a pre-departure test, and a PCR test in return.

Amber destinations : travellers will have to quarantine for 10 days, as well as taking a pre-departure test and two PCR tests

Red destinations : passengers will have to pay for a 10-day hotel quarantine stay on return, as well as a pre-departure test and two PCR tests.

How long can people with apartments in Spain stay for? 

If you are planning on visiting Spain for longer than a simple summer holiday watch out. Since Brexit, Brits are only allowed to stay in the EU for 90 days out of a 180-day period. Rule-breakers may face fines, deportation and difficulties re-entering the country.


Kirsty Mckenzie

Kirsty is a journalist who has reported on news, entertainment, food and drink, travel and features since 2015. She lives in the south of Spain.
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