Traveling to Spain during Covid-19: what you need to know before you go

Editor’s note – Coronavirus cases are constantly evolving around the world. Health officials warn that staying home is the best way to stem transmission until you are fully vaccinated. Below is information on what to know if you are still planning to travel, last updated January 14.

(CNN) — If you plan to to travel in Spain, here’s what you need to know and expect if you want to visit during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The basics

Spain suffered greatly from Covid-19, with a high number of cases and deaths.

What is offered

Spain, which is one of Europe’s biggest hits for good reason, attracts millions of tourists with its warm climate, laid-back vibe and great food and wine. Plus, of course, there are some of Europe’s best resorts, mountains and cultural cities such as Madrid, Seville and Barcelona.

who can go

Fully vaccinated travelers from anywhere in the world can enter Spain for holidays without proof of a negative Covid test, including travelers from countries that Spain has classified as “at risk” destinations, but at the excluding travelers from countries that Spain has classified as “high risk”.

All non-EU and non-Schengen countries are considered “at risk” countries, except for an exempt list which currently includes Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Indonesia, Kuwait, New Zealand, Peru, Qatar, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia. Arabia, South Korea, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Travelers from these countries can enter Spain without proof of vaccination or a recent negative Covid test.

This list non-EU and non-Schengen exempted destinations is updated weekly, and this current iteration is valid until January 16.
Some EU/EEA countries and areas are also considered risky destinations by Spain — the list of European countries at risk is currently extensive, but also changes regularly and should be checked before travelling.
Spain has listed Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe as “high risk” countries. Spain has suspended flights between these countries until January 31 and travel from these countries is only allowed in certain exceptional circumstances – see details of these exceptions via the map here.

People with special dispensation to travel from the designated high-risk Spanish countries must present both proof of vaccination or recovery and a negative Covid test. They must also be quarantined for 10 days upon arrival in Spain in their place of residence or accommodation. Travelers can take a test on day 7 of this quarantine. If it comes back negative, travelers can cut their quarantine short.

Young people between the ages of 12 and 18 who have received a single dose of a vaccine and who are traveling from EU or Schengen countries marked as “at risk” can enter Spain with a PCR or antigen test.

Young people between the ages of 12 and 18 traveling from a country outside the EU and the Schengen zone can only travel to Spain for vacation if they are fully vaccinated. Children under 12 do not need to present any health certificate, regardless of their country of origin.

What are the restrictions?

As mentioned above, fully immunized travelers from anywhere in the world can enter Spain for holidays without proof of a negative Covid test, including travelers from Spanish countries classified as “at risk” destinations, but excluding travelers from Spanish countries classified as “high risk”. ”

Travelers from countries classified as “high risk” by Spain must present a negative test, regardless of their vaccination status.

From February 1, Spain will not accept proof of vaccination if the last vaccination dose was more than 270 days ago.

If you are an unvaccinated traveler from a country that is not part of the EU or the Schengen zone – and one of the exempted non-EU and non-Schengen countries listed above – you cannot visit Spain only if your trip is considered essential.

Unvaccinated travelers from at-risk countries must complete a PCR test within 72 hours of departure and present proof of a negative result upon entry.

All travelers – wherever they come from and regardless of their vaccination status – must complete a Health Check Form (HCF), which can be completed via the Spain travel health website or app. It will generate a QR code which must be presented upon arrival in the country.

Health assessments take place on arrival in Spain, with a temperature check and visual examination as standard.

What is the Covid situation?

Spain has recorded over 7.9 million Covid infections and over 90,600 deaths as of January 14, 2022. There are currently concerns about the Omicron variant in Spain.

As of January 14, more than 86.3 million doses of vaccine have been administered in Spain and more than 80.9% of the population has been fully vaccinated.

What can visitors expect?

Face masks were previously only required in indoor spaces or where social distancing was not possible – since December 24 they are now also required outdoors. See details and exemptions here.
Different regions of Spain have slightly different Covid measures. It is best to check in advance what the individual restrictions are in each region before planning a visit – Spain official tourism website is a useful resource for this.

Travel between regions of Spain is allowed.

Useful links

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Joe Minihane, Julia Buckley and Francesca Street contributed to this report

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