Amid today’s gloom, a *bit* of good news for travel to the Canary Islands

Today’s news that no holiday destinations are being added to the UK’s travel green list is a big blow to everyone working in tourism in mainland Spain, the Balearics and the Canaries.

The situation for travelling to the Canaries has however improved slightly, as the regional government changed its rules yesterday with respect to the islands’ requirement for a negative Covid test to be shown on arrival at holiday accommodation. Now you do not need to show a test if you can prove you have had one or both vaccinations or have already had Covid-19.

The islands were already the only part of Spain not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office’s list of destinations for which it advises against all non-essential travel – which means some travel insurance policies are valid for holidays to the Canaries.

The new rules are as follows:

These are the new requirements for all travellers over six years of age, from outside the Canary Islands, to access any official tourist accommodation in the islands. Note that you only need to comply with ONE of any of the four requirements set out below:

  • A negative Active Infection Diagnostic Test (AIDT), carried out within a maximum period of 72 hours prior to arrival. This test could be a PCR or an antigen test.
  • Having received both Covid-19 vaccinations within the previous eight months, and having official documentation stating the type of vaccine received, the number of doses and the date the jabs were given. The vaccine must be officially approved by the European Medical Agency.
  • Having received one Covid-19 vaccination more than 15 days in advance of arrival and within four months prior to travel, and having official documentation stating the type of vaccine received and the date the jab was given. The vaccine must be officially approved by the European Medical Agency. 
  • Having recovered from Covid-19 within six months prior to the date of travel. This must be accredited with an official medical certificate or public document stating the dates of infection.  

Exceptions:

Those who can prove they are residents of the Canary Islands and provide a declaration that they have not left the islands in the 15 days prior to their arrival at the accommodation, and that in this same period have not had any symptoms compatible with Covid-19. 

Non-residents of the Canary Islands who prove through their travel documentation that they have stayed in the Canary Islands for the 15 days prior to the date of access to the accommodation and declare that in that period they have not had any symptoms compatible with Covid-19. 

Those who prove that they have been outside the islands for a period of less than 72 hours prior to arrival, having remained in its territory for the 15 days prior to that and can declare that in this time period they have not had symptoms compatible with Covid-19.  

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While this is one less thing to sort out if you are thinking of going to the Canaries, it is of course important to bear in mind that while the islands are still on the UK’s amber list – which is now likely to be until at least the end of June – you will need to take a test before returning to the UK and self-isolate at home for 10 days, taking further tests on day two and day eight.

To keep up to date, have a look at the Canary Islands safe destination and the Spanish Tourist Office’s Travel Safe portals.

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