Tourist season 2021 in Spain may be saved after all – airports are back to capacity with nearly 500 flights from the UK to Spain available every day.
As part of England’s “Freedom Day,” fully vaccinated tourists returning from Spain will no longer be quarantined for 10 days. Since the announcement that the rules would be changed, flight bookings from the United Kingdom have increased by 400% – a fivefold increase. The number of flights from the UK has tripled since last week, according to AENA.
However, the reality is that little has changed. Anyone who has not been vaccinated in the United Kingdom by the National Health Service (NHS) must still isolate for 10 days after returning from Spain and take two home coronavirus tests before they can break quarantine. If you have been vaccinated in the European Union, you can skip quarantine if you have UK nationality.
There were 489 flights scheduled between Spain and the UK on this weeks Monday only, up from 152 on July 12. Palma de Mallorca (113 flights), Ibiza (70), Alicante-Elche (62), and Málaga (59) took the majority of the passengers.
Airlines are rescheduling flights to meet the sudden surge in demand. Bookings have increased 400% since UK announced it would lift quarantine requirements, according to ALA airline association sources.
Iberia operates three daily routes between Spanish airports and the UK, with nearly 2,000 seats per day. September will see four daily flights, with more if needed.
Budget Ryanair says bookings between the UK and Spain are at their highest level since September 2019. There were 500% more reservations for Alicante, Málaga, Tenerife, and Murcia than the previous week.
Ryanair, which operates 144 routes between the UK and Spain, will increase capacity in July, August, and September. It is currently operating at 80% of its pre-pandemic capacity.
Despite being the only Spanish destination on England’s green list, the Balearic Islands have been placed back on the amber list as of Monday.
More than 35 million fully vaccinated UK nationals now have “greater ease” when traveling thanks to new rules, according to Balearics regional government spokesperson Iago Negueruela “There is a tourism season,” Negueruela said, adding that the UK decision has no effect on reservations.
Costa del Sol has also been waiting for the Spanish tourist season 2021 to begin. In 2019, three million visitors from the UK made up a third of their business. According to José Luque, president of the Aehcos hotel association in the Costa del Sol, there was a huge spike in bookings when quarantine was lifted. He still thinks this season is “highly volatile” but believes things will not normalize until the fall.