The popular holiday destination announced it will welcome tourists from 1 July with no quarantine. This will allow the nation to potentially salvage the busy summer period.

Spain went into lockdown in March and closed all hotels, bars, and restaurants as travel restrictions were announced, halting tourism flows in the process. The Spanish tourism sector now has the opportunity to regain some sort of normality and may benefit from pent-up demand sooner than expected.

It is critical for Spain to open up the holiday market for its economy. According to GlobalData, the country saw 86 million international arrivals in 2019 and was forecasted to see 89 million arrivals in 2020 (pre-Covid-19). Allowing tourists to visit the country with no quarantine is an attractive offer. Imposing a two week quarantine would have put off many tourists. In addition, imposing no quarantine rules will allow the country to see major economic benefits after a huge, continuous loss.

Airlines across Europe are attempting to capitalise on this opportunity and resuming flights to Spain. EasyJet, Jet2 and Ryanair have announced that they plan to resume flights and holidays to the country, but at reduced frequency. Even at reduced frequency, this increase in international tourism from across Europe will pump much needed cash in to Spain’s drained economy.

However, the UK Government has implemented its own 14-day quarantine policy from 8 June. This could prove to be a major issue for Spain as it is the top source market for the destination. Even though UK tourists will not have to quarantine, they will have to self-isolate for two-weeks once they return. This will discourage UK tourists who will not want to quarantine for 14 days, many will still have responsibilities when they return such as work.

According to GlobalData’s Covid-19, week 8 global consumer survey, global respondents are still highly concerned about Covid-19. 42% of consumers highlighted they are ‘extremely concerned’ and 38% highlighted they are ‘quite concerned’ regarding the current pandemic. Promotions must be undertaken to attract tourists but to also reassure tourists that health and safety is the number one priority in Spain.

Spain is on the road to recovery and its tourism sector will begin seeing an increase in tourist numbers as restrictions are eased, but there will be challenges on the way. The nation needs to find the right balance between making it accessible for much needed international tourism, whilst continuing to ensure the safety of its citizens.

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