By Chris King • 19 May 2022 • 21:51
Photo of arrivals sign at a Spanish airport.
Reyes Maroto, Spain’s Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, announced this Thursday, May 19, that “in a matter of days” Spain will stop requiring tourists from outside the EU to have a Covid vaccination certificate to enter Spanish territory.
During an interview with Onda Cero, the minister explained, “It will be a matter of days before we are going to eliminate a restriction that could be discouraging tourists from outside the European Union from visiting us. We are going to stop requiring the vaccination certificate to allow them to enter with only a negative test”.
The move will see Spain begin to dispense with the EU’s Covid Digital Certificate. This requirement came into force in July last year to try to make travel safe, initially between member states. It was later extended to passengers from third countries, who currently present their own vaccination certificates.
This decision is in line with the request that the European Commission has made to the EU countries, to stop requesting the Covid Passport as soon as the situation allows it. Greece already lifted this requirement on May 1, when presenting the Covid passport ceased to be mandatory and became only optional.
Sources from the European Commission described the decision of Athens as a “welcome event” and pointed out that the Community Executive “firmly supports the decisions of the member states to lift these restrictions when possible”.
Passengers from outside the European Union will subsequently be treated the same as citizens of EU states. The Covid passport will not be necessary, but it is believed that travellers might still be obliged to present a certificate that shows that they have recovered from the virus within the last 180 days or show a negative diagnostic test, PCR or antigen test, performed 24 hours before travelling.
Last Monday, May 16, EU countries that do not have regulations to the contrary will no longer require masks on planes that take off or land on their territory. Spain is not among these nations yet. Carolina Darias, the Minister of Health, continues to require the wearing of a mask in three cases: in health centres and establishments, in nursing homes, and on public transport, including aeroplanes.
Therefore, also until further notice, the Covid Passport will continue to have the validity that the EU gave it last February. It will expire nine months after receiving the complete schedule of the vaccine when its bearer has not received a third booster jab.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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