Spain’s Tourism Minister Reyes Maroto said on Monday Britain could lift its quarantine on travelers returning from the Balearic and Canary Islands later in the day.
In an interview with La Sexta television, Maroto said her government had sent new epidemiological data to London, which she hoped would prompt the British government to review its quarantine measures.
The minister told the broadcaster that the islands, in particular, had a “low incidence rate” and the UK should review its indicators.
Last week, moments after the FCO hardened its stance on travel to Spain – forcing the British to return to self-quarantine for two weeks – Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez called the restrictions “unfair” and said that tourists would be safer in his country than the UK.
Tourists ready to enter quarantine have expressed concerns that the fortnight’s self-isolation could cost them paid work. It also spooked Spain, who felt the move could interrupt the country’s summer holiday season.
An exclusive poll conducted by MailOnline found that a quarter of Britons plan to change their vacation plans after the shocking decision to reimpose quarantine restrictions on Spain.
About 25% said they were considering changes and more than a third (34%) said they were now less likely to book vacations abroad over concerns that other popular destinations might follow suit. in place of punitive restrictions.
Holidaymakers were given only five hours’ notice on Saturday night that those returning from Spain would have to self-isolate for 14 days following an increase in the number of cases.
On June 22, the day after Spain’s state of emergency ended and free movement was restored across the country, the Ministry of Health recorded 125 new cases in 24 hours. Six weeks later, the daily tally jumped, reaching 1,525 on Friday.
Spanish Minister of Tourism and Industry Reyes Maroto, pictured in Madrid, Spain, May 30, 2020
Tourists in Benidorm last week, who are now subject to quarantine restrictions upon their return to the UK
British citizens arrive at Malaga-Costa del Sol airport after the UK imposed a quarantine on all travelers from Spain
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said tourists are safer in his country than in the UK. These are the worst coronavirus hot spots in every country and the number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 population
Travelers could lose vacations AND money as airlines refuse to cancel flights to Spain
Airlines refuse to cancel flights to Spain – though the government advises against all but essential travel.
The move means hundreds of thousands of UK families are in limbo at risk of losing thousands of pounds.
It also puts the airline industry at odds with the government for ignoring a public safety decree.
The government has issued the travel warning after the emergence of a second wave of coronavirus in parts of Spain.
Customers normally expect travel agencies to cancel flights and offer refunds.
But all the major carriers, which suffered massive losses after the airline collapse, continue to offer the flights.
This means that families will potentially lose their vacations and their money.
Spain leads the main Western European countries with an average of 60 cases of coronavirus per 100,000 inhabitants.
While the south of the country and the Canary and Balearic Islands remain in good condition, the regions of Navarre, Aragon and Catalonia recorded more than 120 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over a period of 14 days, making the northeast of Spain the largest European hotspot along with parts of Romania, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control.
Today Maroto said: “It is a decision of the British authorities, but we have given them all the arguments so that they can trust that their tourists are safe in Spanish destinations. “
“If this is not the decision we are waiting for, we will continue to work with them,” she added.
“For us the best news is to have the destination open with the UK, which is our main outbound market.
“We have the best protocols and are greatly appreciated by the tourists themselves, who have transferred to their government that they feel safe in Spain. ‘
Sanchez criticized the government’s sudden decision to force Britons returning from Spain to stay home for two weeks and called on the government to reconsider its decision.
Tourists ready to go into quarantine fear the fortnight’s self-isolation could cost them paid work and the newly imposed rules could kill the summer vacation season.
Speaking moments after the Foreign Ministry hardened its stance and advised against non-essential travel throughout Spain, including the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands, Sanchez told the TV channel on Monday evening Spanish Telecinco: “I think the UK decision is incorrect. a.
“Spain is made up of a number of regions whose cumulative contagion rate is lower than the European average as well as the British average.
“The Spanish tourist industry has acted very responsibly in recent months and has sent a message of safety regarding the health emergency we are going through.
“It is true that at the global level, the coronavirus pandemic continues to show a very worrying development and at the European level as well, but in Spain the spread of the virus is not occurring in a uniform manner.
“Sixty-two per cent of new cases occur in two regions but in the majority of the country the cumulative incidence of the virus is lower than the European average and the UK average. “