President of the Balearic government, Francina Armengol revealed today that she has been told the islands can lift the regulation on June 21 rather than on July 1 which the rest of Spain is expecting. This, she says, will allow the planned experiment to bring 5,000 Germans to Mallorca to go-ahead in a bid to test all of its anti-coronavirus protocols from the moment they arrive at the airport to the moment they leave.
Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has already announced that the current 14-day quarantine rule will be scrapped on July 1 to pave the way for international travel, with his now-famous comment of “Book your summer holidays, we are open for business!”
Today, Mr Sanchez had a video conference with the leaders of autonomous regions across Spain when he revealed that he would be asking for the final extension of the State of Emergency until June 21st. In the final stage of the de-escalation period, the different areas of the country will be able to make more decisions for themselves but he stressed that it remained with the Spanish government to open the borders to different countries, yet to be decided, from July 1.
However, the Balearic president said she had put it to the prime minister Mallorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera needed the 14-day quarantine rule lifted from June 21 if the German experiment was to go-ahead.
Only in this way, she said, would this first batch of visitors be able to enjoy the same freedoms as local residents, such as going to the beach and sitting on the terraces, rather than being confined to their hotels.
According to Spanish media Ultrahora.es, the Prime Minister has agreed and would make an exception for the Balearics in these circumstances.
It is not known if the lifting of the 14-day quarantine would apply just to the German visitors or all other international tourists who arrive during those last nine days of June.
In any event, it is still not clear when Brits would be able to travel as both Spain and the UK need to give the go-ahead and Britain still has its own 14-day quarantine rule.
Four hotels in Mallorca have offered to take the German visitors. Two of them are in Platja de Palma and two in Alcúdia.
It is hoped to have another one Menorca, another in Ibiza and a third in Formentera.
Originally, it was thought about 3,000 Germans would take part in the experiment which will also test all the coronavirus protocols, from arriving at the airport, transfers to hotels, the accommodation itself, arrangements around the swimming pools, use of the facilities, trips out and their eventual return.
According to Diario de Mallorca, that figure could now increase to 4,000 for Mallorca, 500 in Menorca, 500 in Ibiza and 100 in Formentera.
The latter island is considerably ahead of other Spanish regions in the de-escalation period as it has always been one phase ahead, together with three of the Canary islands.
Again, this is due to the low incidence of coronavirus.
Published at Sun, 31 May 2020 14:46:00 +0000