That trip to the Mediterranean could actually be on this summer. Last year Spain was one of many European destinations to let holidaymakers jet in without a quarantine period. The country has since reopened its borders to members of the EU’s Schengen travel zone and a handful of other less-affected countries around the world.
Now the country thrown open its borders to travellers from the UK and Japan too. As of today, the two countries have been added to the list of non-EU nations exempt from its ‘essential travel only’ rule that applies to almost all visitors from outside the bloc.
Pedro Sánchez, the Spanish prime minister, last week said there would also be no requirement for Brits to provide a test on arrival. However, travellers should note that Spain is on the UK’s ‘amber list’, meaning a mandatory ten-day quarantine at home will await on their return home.
Currently, permitted visitors to Spain face no mandatory quarantine, but will have to go through three ‘health checkpoints’: an information form, a temperature check and a visual inspection. As of November, all travellers from certain ‘high-risk areas’ must also provide a negative test result from within the past 72 hours.
Once you’re there, the holiday experience may well feel a little different too. Masks are compulsory in outdoor public places all over the country, although you are allowed to remove them while swimming and sunbathing.
So if you do manage to make it on your long-awaited Spanish beach break any time soon, you’ll have to come prepared with masks, sanitiser and plenty of alternative night-out plans. And with the ever-present risk of lockdown rules being tightened even further, you should also be ready to up sticks and go home at very short notice.
Remember, many countries are still warning against all non-essential travel and some are quarantining all overseas arrivals, including their own returning citizens. Check all the relevant restrictions before you think about travelling.