The date for the arrival of the first international tourists in Spain after the coronavirus crisis is still unclear after mixed messages from the government on Thursday. Minister for Tourism Reyes Maroto's announcement that land borders with France and Portugal would open on 22 June was later rectified in a statement issued by the government headquarters, Moncloa, which confirmed that the date for the start of "safe international movement" was still 1 July.
The rollercoaster ride for the Spanish tourism industry took a dive earlier this week when Germany, the country's second biggest source market for foreign visitors after the UK, said that its citizens could travel around Europe from 15 June, except to Spain and Norway. The reason given, however, was reciprocity and the Spanish foreign minister, Arancha González Laya, said that Germany would lift its veto "as soon as Spain allows the arrival of tourists".
The Balearic and Canary islands remained hopeful this week that the government would allow international tourists to their destinations before the rest of Spain, after the state of alarm is lifted on 21 June.
The government said earlier this week that it was working on establishing safe air bridges, initially between the Spanish islands and Germany and Scandinavian countries.
The situation with UK visitors is more complicated, however, due to the still high rate of Covid-19 infection in the country and the quarantine regulations due to come into force this coming Monday. Pandemic figures there still "need to improve" said Maroto on Wednesday.
New flights scheduled
Meanwhile airlines continue to announce plans and this week Easyjet has said that it will resume operations on the Costa del Sol this summer. It will be operating 50 per cent of its flights in July, it said, and 75 per cent in August. On its new schedule are flights between the Costa del Sol and 17 European destinations, including Amsterdam, Belfast, Bristol, Basel, Paris, Glasgow, Geneva, London (Gatwick, Southend, Luton and Stansted), Liverpool, Manchester, Milan, Newcastle, Berlin and Toulouse. Air Europe has said it will start routes up again between Malaga and Madrid and Paris from 15 July.