2020 has been a terrible year to travel anywhere on holiday. The global pandemic has wreaked havoc on travel plans across the world. Spain has not escaped the sting of Covid-19. Travel restrictions vary from country to country and are constantly being assessed and updated as infection rates fluctuate, and in Spain, this is no different. So, remember to check for updates as this information may be out of date by the time you read it.
Traveling during the time of Covid-19
Traveling to Spain is a lot more difficult due to the pandemic. Covid-19 is extremely infectious and therefore, proximity to other people in enclosed spaces is a high-risk activity making traveling by air or sea more dangerous. Most countries, Spain included, have strict travel requirements in place to help minimise the transmission of this virus and keep infection rates low. Below are some tips to keep in mind when traveling to this beautiful country
Basic Safety Tips while Traveling by air or sea
Wear a mask in-flight and bring hand sanitiser as well. Leave your hands away from your face. Wash them regularly and often. If you cannot, use hand sanitiser when necessary. Also, be aware of any self- isolation requirements for when you return to your country of origin after your trip.
Check the current COVID-19 -19 Guidelines and plan
Travel guidelines are constantly changing. This is no different if you are planning to travel to Spain. Check the guidelines frequently for updates on where you can safely travel to and from in and around the country and keep on checking. Have a backup plan for when you need to change where you intend to go due to new restrictions and closures being enforced while visiting Spain. If you plan on purchasing travel insurance, make sure they cover Covid-19 on their policies, as some do not. Call any hotels and check that they are open and are following the proper Covid-19 procedures and whether they are still serving their buffet breakfasts and what safety procedures are being followed.
Current Travel advice for traveling to Spain
Currently travel to Spain is allowed from the European Union, from a country in the Schengen Area, or from another country that has a reciprocal agreement with Spain. These countries are Australia, China, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, Singapore, Thailand, and Uruguay. It is important to check with your country of origin on any travel restrictions to Spain. It is heavily advised that travel is restricted to essential travel only where possible due to the rising case numbers.
Requirements for Entry into Spain
Travelers to Spain must first and foremost be in good health with no visible signs of illness. It is advised that if you display symptoms of Covid-19 on or before the day of your departure that you should stay home and not travel at all. This will help keep the spread of coronavirus minimal.
Health Control Form
All people taking a trip to Spain must present their completed Health Control Form (HCF). This must be completed and signed electronically before you arrive in Spain. This form can be accessed via the Spain Travel Health website or smartphone app, for android and iOS. Once completed, you will be given a QR code that must be presented upon arrival in Spain. It is only valid in digital format save a few justifiable reasons for a paper version. Each person traveling must fill out a form and you must do this for each subsequent trip to Spain as well.
Negative SARS-cov-2 test for travellers from high-risk countries
At the end of November, travellers from countries considered to be high risk for coronavirus infections must provide a negative SARS-cov-2 test within 72 hours before your flight. This is to further reduce the transmission of Covid-19. Spain introduced the measure, following guidelines from the EU which focus more on diagnostic testing rather than quarantining. The negative test result documentation must be written in Spanish, English, French, or German. Failure to do so will result in being held liable for a fine and a test being carried out upon arrival.
Controls at Entry Points
In addition to the HCF and providing a negative Covid-19 test additional measures will be enforced upon arriving in Spain. All travellers arriving by air or sea will go through a health check. Your temperature will be checked, along with your HCF, negative Covid-19 test result, and other travel documents. You will also undergo a visual inspection to ensure that you are not displaying any visible signs of having contracted Covid-19.
“If your Health Control Form reveals any indication of possible symptoms, you will undergo a diagnostic test while there to rule out having Covid-19. It is important to note that you can be refused entry for non-compliance as well as displaying coronavirus symptoms to protect public health interests,” says Anna Velas, a travel writer at 1day2write.com
How to travel while in Spain
Once you have made it to Spain, you might be wondering how to get around within the country. Public transportation is running however, there are some restrictions and guidelines to follow as well. Try and leave the recommended social distance gap and masks are required by all persons over the age of 6. Do not sit in the priority seats as those are for the elderly and people who are disabled.
Renting a car
It is possible to hire a car while traveling around Spain. Some of the major car rental places, like Avis and Europcar, are still open. However, be aware that there are reduced opening hours and have closed some of their smaller pick-up and drop off locations. Always pre-book where possible.
Alternatives to Buses and Trains
It is recommended that you avoid public transport where possible. Spain has good weather and lots of sun. Renting a bike for the day might be more sensible and safer. Choosing to walk where possible is also a good idea. You can take in the sights better and get some exercise.
What restrictions are there in Spain?
Currently, there are restrictions of movement and curfews in place in most regions. Check the local regional website for the region you are visiting so you are aware of the local restrictions. Masks are mandatory for everyone over the age of six, both in public indoor and outdoor spaces.
“This includes walking down the street, visiting outdoor parks, going into shops, etc. Masks do not need to be worn during exercise. Keeping 1.5 metres apart where possible is advised as well as frequent handwashing,” explains travel blogge Hugo Rodrigues, a blogger at Britstudent.com
Guidelines for Beaches and Pools
In areas that are not in lockdown, beaches and pools are open. Some regions, with busier beaches, have introduced maximum capacity limits to ensure safety. You might have to book a visit to the local beach. Many pools have Covid-19 measures in place like showering before and after entering the pool and using hand sanitiser.
Traveling to Spain has a few more extra requirements. Proper planning and keeping up to date on travel information will help make visiting Spain run smoothly during the Covid-19 pandemic. Following the information provided will help ensure a fun yet safe trip.
Michael Dehoyos works at Dissertation Writing Service as a content marketer and editor. He contributes his writing and expertise to numerous sites and publications.
Other useful resources:
» Spain Tourism Board Travel Safe information.
» UK GOV Travel Information.
» Spanish Government Covid-19 Updates.
» Spanish Government - Ministery of Foreign Affairs.
» AENA - Spanish Airport Authority.
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