By Sally Underwood •
Published: 06 Jul 2021 • 11:54
Costa del Sol tourism businesses set to welcome Brits from July 19. Image: Wikimedia
The Costa del Sol Association of Hotel Entrepreneurs (Aehcos) in Spain has said it expects the easing of restrictions in the UK to bring British tourism back to the area.
Jose Luque, head of the association, said: “The measure, although it is late, can be a boost for those hotels and apartments that work mainly with British tourists. The decision of the United Kingdom will mean the reopening of more establishments on the Costa del Sol and marks the beginning of the recovery of the tourism sector.”
He added that the news that the UK government may allow vaccinated Brits to travel back from amber list countries without quarantining, “great news for many of our establishments.”
He explained: “In 2019 25.9% of overnight stays, more than 6.6 million, in our destination were from Britain.”
The move to allow vaccinated UK tourists to visit amber list countries including Spain without quarantine is also likely to be welcomed by business on the Costa Blanca after the Valencian Community’s Tourism Secretary Francesc Colomer said it was, “probably one of the safest regions in Spain and Europe.”
Meanwhile, businesses in Mallorca have already seen tourism figures increase after the Balearic Islands were placed on the UK’s travel green list, with more than 100 flights headed to Palma from the UK over the last weekend.
The news comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on July 5 that while “tough” travel rules will remain in the UK, it was important to take into account the impact that Covid vaccines have made.
The travel industry is desperate for more destinations and fewer restrictions on tourists who arrive in the UK, with fears that ongoing rules will continue to damage an already beleaguered sector of the UK’s economy.
“We will maintain tough border controls, including the red list and recognizing the protection afforded by two doses of vaccine. We will work with the travel industry towards removing the need for fully vaccinated arrivals to isolate on return from an amber country,” said Mr Johnson.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps will make an update this week, the PM added. The travel industry held a day of action last month to highlight the sector’s plight.
While it was slightly boosted by the addition of popular destinations in Spain’s Balearic Islands to the green list, the number of places that Brits can fly to without quarantining on return, or facing restrictions in the other country, is still low.
People traveling from countries designated green by the UK Government do not have to quarantine when arriving in the UK but must take PCR tests before departure and after they arrive.
Travellers from amber list nations, such as mainland Spain, are required to undergo a 10-day quarantine and take tests pre-departure and on day two and day eight after arriving in the UK in what is expected to be a boost for tourism.
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