Spain announces opening date for Russian tourists
After lingering expectations and vague prospects of holidays abroad, Spain is opening up to Russian travellers. The kingdom’s tourism minister said the official date of opening the borders to non-EU tourists is set for 20 May.
According to minister Reyes Maroto, the “revision” of EU article 912, which for almost a year banned foreign tourists from travelling to Spain, is “rapidly progressing”. The imminent opening of the borders to our compatriots could be a great boon not only for themselves, but also for Spain’s ailing tourism sector, as resorts will draw not only Russian tourists, but also travellers from Britain, the United States, Turkey and other countries expecting to spend their holidays in the kingdom this summer.
Maroto, in a statement, expectedly focused her remarks on the UK, as it was the country that remained a key market, supplying almost a quarter of Spain’s foreign tourists in 2019. The minister noted that because the UK has few infections, British tourists, whether vaccinated or not, would probably not even have to provide a negative coronavirus test to enter Spain. But the Foggy Albion country failed to please Spaniards with a similar response: Spain did not make it onto the coveted green list of UK tourist destinations due to high infection rates, despite at least one dose of the vaccine being administered to 30% of the local population.
The minister of tourism, trade and industry explained that tourists from Russia will be able to come to Spain after May 20, but for this it is necessary to “meet the criteria”, – said the head of department. According to her, it is meant that closer to the date of opening will be taken into account the level of spread of coronavirus infection in our country. On the whole, the disease statistics in Russia are on the decline: the number of infections has not exceeded 10’000 for the last two months.
By the way, Russia’s Coronavirus Control Centre is due to decide on the list of countries to be open from 1 June. For details, read “From June 1, many countries will open to Russian tourists: Italy, Malta, Portugal, Israel, Tunisia, Dominican Republic and others.
Spain is plunging headlong into the summer tourist season with restrictions lifted and optimism. “The state of emergency is a thing of the past. We have to look to the future and that is vaccines, vaccines, and again vaccines,” said Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez. However, some of the country’s regional governments are concerned about future outbreaks of coronavirus as many courts are cracking down on attempts to impose curfews now that the state of emergency has expired. For reference, as of 11 May there were just under 5’000 new cases of infection and 205 deaths in Spain.
Incidentally, vaccination has not helped Seychelles and the Maldives, despite universal vaccination, the number of coronavirus cases there is skyrocketing.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)