Tourists arrive at Ibiza airport

Tourists arrive at Ibiza airport.

17-10-2020Marcelo Sastre

The Spanish Government has reached an agreement with the regional governments of the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands on a protocol to establish travel corridors with European countries. The agreement has been established to allow the mobility of travellers in order to reactivate tourism in the two Spanish archipelagos without putting the public at risk.

The tourism corridor protocol is a programme based on the implementation of measures that will safeguard public health and minimise the risks associated with tourism mobility.

Details of the Protocol

Testing

Travellers arriving from regions with an accumulated infection rate of more than 50 per 100,000 inhabitants during the previous 14 days will need to undergo an active infection diagnostic test 48 hours before flying and present a negative test result to be able to travel. Those coming from source markets with an accumulated infection rate of 50 or less over the prior 14 day period will not be required to undergo a test prior to arrival.

Prior to departure, all travellers will also undergo an active infection diagnostic test (preferably a rapid antigen test if so agreed, otherwise a PCR test) before leaving the islands. This huge testing effort seeks to guarantee that travellers returning from these regions will not face quarantines on their return. Under this system, no traveller with an active infection will arrive to the Balearic Islands or Canary Islands and no infected traveller will depart from the islands. The system would therefore guarantee safety for tourists, island residents and the wider populations in both countries.

Testing before return will take place on premises specifically set up for this purpose by the health authorities of the two archipelagos with sufficient time prior to departure.

Quarantine

The regional governments of the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands will - at no cost to the traveller - provide the necessary resources for fulfilling any required quarantine processes with agreements already in place with accommodation establishments across the islands. This proposal therefore also covers the services required for any travellers that test positive for Covid-19. Cases potentially requiring any kind of healthcare or hospital admission due to the development of serious symptoms will also be fully covered by the respective health care services in the Balearic Islands and Canary Islands.

Additional measures

Information and promotion will also be facilitated for tourism arrivals about the contact-tracing app “COVID Radar”. This app is already available in English, French and German with additional translations currently underway. Similarly, enhanced tourist tracing measures will be carried out, as detailed in the SpTH Overseas Health Control Forms.

These measures will ensure tourism can be restored in a safe way and eliminate fears in source countries regarding overseas travel amongst citizens.

Available Measures & Health Capacities

Available measures and health capacities, outlined by the respective archipelagos include:

Healthcare and Quarantine Capacities

The regional governments of the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands have allocated a series of tourist accommodation establishments for quarantine purposes. These will be available for tourists who are diagnosed with Covid-19 during their stay, as well as for their close contacts.

The regional governments of the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands, together with the Spanish Government are convinced that, under these conditions of prior testing and guaranteed healthcare, the tourism corridor proposal offers the necessary safety conditions for all stakeholders involved to be able to safely restore tourism. Furthermore, it responds to existing international demand and thereby helps recover trust in the tourism industry not only in the Balearic Islands and Canary Islands but throughout the whole of Spain, and the rest of the world.

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Juan love / Hace 5 days

Mark- From what I saw over the summer, the tourists from Mainland Spain carrying on as though the last 7 months didn't happen contributed mostly to this problem.

+3-

rich / Hace 7 days

Bonkers, the whole idea. The tests don't give accurate results. Why risk 'our winter for a couple of tourists, we've paid our dues and we want normality asap.

+0-

Bob / Hace 7 days

Its a good idea for the protection of the citizens of Mallorca but this will pretty much shut down the remaining tourist trade now. I couldn't find a test anywhere nearby or under £175. I'm only coming out to work on my house and I live and work from home in the UK. Quarantining here is easy and keeping to myself over there is fine too. No idea how they intend to test travellers in Mallorca? Many would have to use public transport to access the test site?? err.....

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Steve / Hace 8 days

I have just read the article "Spain planning safe air corridors" unfortunately, under the current practices, I am extremely sceptical that this will attract more visitors from the UK. Firstly, the NHS advice is, do not have a free Covid test if (X) you are going abroad and don't have symptoms. A private test can cost up to £125 and neither a NHS or Private can guarantee results within 24 hours. Let's hope this can be resolved and people can once again enjoy the beautiful island of Mallorc and people's livelihoods can be restored.

+3-

Brian Owen / Hace 8 days

Excellent proposals

+0-

Yogi / Hace 9 days

This will only work if it applies to Spanish visitors too. Madrid and Cataluña are well above the threshold imposed on foreign travellers. Will they have to face the same protocols? No mention in this article. If they don’t do it then all this effort will be a waste. It’s what stuffed Mallorca’s summer this year and could derail next year too.

+5-

David / Hace 9 days

This won’t work logistically. Even most private tests in central London take at least 3 days to get results. The only one that can deliver next day is the NHS and that is explicitly not to be used for travel purposes for those without symptoms.

+4-

Lee Anthony Curtis / Hace 9 days

Is there a timescale for when these protocols are planned to come into effect?

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Mark Badoer / Hace 9 days

So 60% of the UK is in some sort of lockdown, because of spiraling corona infection figures, and we are going to invite them over, now things are looking quite stable here. Brits, please stay on your own island!!

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