Can I travel to Spain from the UK? All the rules you need to know

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Holidaymakers planning to travel to Spain will need to have been vaccinated against Covid-19 within a reduced period from February 1, it has been confirmed.

Following the recommendations of the Commission of the European Union, the Spanish authorities have announced that only vaccination certificates indicating that a traveler has received their last dose within the last 270 days will be recognized.

This means that people who received their last vaccine more than nine months ago will need to be vaccinated before entering the country.

There has been an increase in Covid cases across the country in recent weeks, with the fast-spreading Omicron variant accounting for up to 98% of infections.

Spain and its islands have long been a favorite destination for Britons, with more than 18 million holidaymakers visiting this Mediterranean hotspot in a normal year. However, the coronavirus pandemic has decimated the travel industry.

The country spent much of the 2021 holiday season on the UK’s now defunct Orange List, meaning travelers were subject to heavier testing and isolation rules than those who were returning from the countries on the green list.

However, the authorities hope that the tourism sector will recover in the spring.

So can you book a Spanish getaway – and what are the current travel rules? Here’s everything you need to know.

Are British holidaymakers allowed to travel to Spain?

The Alhambra Palace in Granada

(Getty Images)

Yes – but only fully vaccinated people.

From December 1, unvaccinated Britons were banned from entering Spain, in new rules announced on Sunday November 28.

Previously, anyone who had a negative PCR test result in the previous 72 hours could enter Spain for work or leisure.

But from early December, travelers from the UK had to show proof of full course of a Covid-19 vaccine, with the second dose given at least 14 days before travel, in order to enter the country.

Non-UK resident travelers should receive a double shot with a vaccine authorized by the European Medicines Agency or the World Health Organization in order to enter – but booster injections are currently not included in the requirements.

A valid and up-to-date NHS Covid Pass will suffice as proof of vaccination.

It must also be an up-to-date Pass: downloaded versions of the NHS Covid Pass are dated and expire after 30 days.

As stated above, only proof of vaccination that has been received within the last 270 days will be recognized for entry.

This means that people who received their last vaccine more than nine months ago will need to be vaccinated before entering the country.

Before traveling to Spain, all passengers must also complete and sign an online form Sanitary control form no later than 48 hours before the trip, declaring any known history of exposure to Covid-19 and giving their contact details.

Anyone who has not completed this form electronically through the Spain Travel Health website or app can submit it in hard copy before boarding.

Recovery certificates – a medical document showing that you have recovered from Covid-19 within the last six months prior to travel – are not currently accepted for arrivals from the UK.

Depending on the region you are traveling to, you may need to show your proof of vaccination to enter accommodation or local places while in the country.

Are unvaccinated children allowed to enter Spain?

The aquamarine waters that surround Mallorca

(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Only children under 12 years old.

Children aged 11 and under are exempt from showing proof of vaccination, but must still be counted on a health screening form completed within 48 hours of travel.

Unvaccinated children aged 12 and over are currently not allowed to enter Spain.

What are the UK rules when I return from Spain?

Until February 11, fully vaccinated travelers returning from Spain must have a booked “second day” test to take within two days of arrival.

They must also complete a Passenger Locator Form (PLF) within 48 hours of returning to the UK, for which they must have an order number for their second day of testing.

Day two tests can be lateral flow, rather than the more expensive PCR test.

However, from 4am on February 11, all Covid testing requirements for vaccinated travelers arriving in England are to be scrapped, the government confirmed in January.

“You will see changes so that people who arrive no longer have to take tests if they have been vaccinated, if they have been double vaccinated,” said Boris Johnson. Sky News.

“Thanks to the tough decisions – I think people will agree that we made the big calls well – we are now riding through the Omicron wave,” the Prime Minister added. “So what we’re doing on the trip to show that this country is open for business, people coming in no longer have to take tests if they’ve been double-vaccinated.”

From February 11, unvaccinated people (who may have traveled to Spain prior to the December 1 rule change) must take a lateral flow test before departure and book a PCR test for the day of arrival or departure. one of the next two days. The ‘eighth day’ test has been scrapped and they will no longer need to self-isolate on their return (they currently need to self-quarantine for 10 days upon arrival).

How long will the new rules be in place?

The Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona

(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

At present, there is no indication that the Spanish government intends to relax entry rules to allow unvaccinated travelers to visit the country from the UK, or to increase the deadline for dates. vaccination from 270 days.

However, as we approach the summer holiday season, this may change depending on the state of Covid rates nationwide.

What restrictions are in place in Spain?

Restrictions vary from region to region in Spain.

On December 22, ministers announced that mask rules would be tightened again for the first time in six months, with face coverings to be worn by everyone in outdoor spaces.

Anyone over the age of six must wear a face mask in enclosed public spaces, on public transport and in crowded outdoor spaces where social distancing is not possible.

Social distancing measures of 1.5m are also in place across the country.

Many sites and museums have limited capacity or now require visitors to book a timeslot online in advance.

Some regions have their own restrictions, so you should check the rules of the region you are visiting before traveling – the Spanish tourist board Travel Safe website has an interactive map you can check for regional rules.

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