Britons who travel to Spain will not need to quarantine upon their arrival, the country’s foreign minister has said, as she urged the UK to enter a reciprocal agreement.
Anyone returning to the UK would still have to isolate for 14 days under the Government plans in an effort to prevent new coronavirus cases from abroad.
Boris Johnson is under considerable pressure to scrap the policy over fears it could decimate the UK’s tourism industry and other airlines. A review of the policy is expected by June 29.
Spain’s foreign minister Arncha Gonzalez Laya said visitors from the EU and the UK will “freely” be allowed to enter the country from Sunday when its state of emergency finishes.
She told BBC News: “We will allow British visitors to enter Spain just like the rest of the European Union as from June 21 freely and without the need for a quarantine.
“We’re discussing with the UK authorities to see if they would do the same on their side, we nevertheless are doing this out of respect for the 400,000 British citizens that have a second residence in Spain and are dying to benefit from their homes in our country.
“We do hope they (the UK Government) will be sensitive to the 250,000 Spaniards that are also living in the UK and would like to enter the UK without a quarantine.”
Ms Gonzalez Laya said visitors would face a “triple check” on their origin, temperature and contact point in order to stop Spain re-importing Covid-19.
Portugal’s ambassador to the UK has also said the nation wants to welcome British tourists again now the coronavirus alert level has been reduced.
Manuel Lobo Antunes told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “There was very good news for you, for us, for Europe that the alert system has come from four to three and that means a significant improvement in the control of the pandemic here in the UK.
“We think that the situation is under control and we would be happy to receive, as before, as many British as possible.”
But the Foreign Office is still advising British nationals against all but essential international travel.
And all passengers bar a handful of exemptions must still go into self-isolation for 14 days after arriving in the UK.
Home Secretary Priti Patel promised the quarantine would be reviewed after three weeks when she imposed it on June 8, giving her until June 29.
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