German tourists are now allowed to fly to Spain for 'safe corridor' trial - here’s how it works
Mallorca has welcomed hundreds of tourists from Germany for the first time since Spain shut its borders in March, at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
Over 10,000 German tourists will now be allowed to visit the Balearic Islands, which include Ibiza and Menorca, as part of a "travel corridor".
The corridor will help replenish Spain's now suffering travel industry, which is so crucial to the country’s economy. New regulations are intended to keep the country's coronavirus outbreak at bay.
When are tourists from other countries allowed to visit Spain?
The tourist industry in Spain generates 12 per cent of Spain's gross domestic product (GDP) and is responsible for around two and a half million jobs in the country. Because of this, the Spanish government is facing great pressure to open borders again and restart the crucial industry.
The islands’ welcome is a trial to test how the rest of the country will reopen its doors to other European holidaymakers on the set date of 21 June.
The move allowing German tourists into the Balearic Islands has predated the set date Spain is to welcome back international tourists, which is 1 July.
What are the safety regulations for travellers?
Up to 10,900 German residents are now allowed to visit the Balearic Islands, thanks to an agreement with the German travel company, TUI, several airlines and other holiday operators.
The first of these German travellers, landed in Mallorca from Dusseldorf on Monday 15 June.
The travellers all had to wear face masks on board the flight and were required to fill out a detailed health report in Germany before taking off.
Upon arrival in Mallorca, they passed signs instructing tourists to keep their hands clean through regular washing, and to keep their face masks on while in the airport.
Visitors had their temperatures taken at the airport, while remaining at a safe distance from other holidaymakers. Spanish border staff were also wearing masks to uphold safety standards.
What are the safety regulations on the islands?
The German travellers must stay on the islands for a minimum of five nights, however they will not have to complete a two week quarantine.
They will have their body temperatures checked by infra-red cameras at their hotel. Hotels are currently being limited to 50 per cent occupancy.
The president of the Balearic Islands, Francina Armengol, announced that the Mallorcan authorities will be sure to test any tourists showing symptoms of the virus. Those who test positive will be transferred to a separate part of their hotel, before doctors can determine the best course of action for their treatment or return home.