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Where can tourists and visitors in Spain get a PCR test and how much does it cost?

Where can tourists and visitors in Spain get a PCR test and how much does it cost?
Photo: Oscar del Pozo/AFP
Depending on their Covid health status and their countries’ travel requirements, holidaymakers in Spain may need to get a PCR test before they fly back home. Here’s what you need to know about where to get this type of Covid test, prices and more. 

Do I need a PCR test to travel from Spain back to my country?

This depends on your country’s own travel restrictions and possibly whether you have been vaccinated against Covid-19 or not. 

For example, as things stand, the UK still expects all travellers to take a PCR before travelling from Spain. (AUGUST 27TH UPDATE: Spain remains on UK’s quarantine-free amber list for first three weeks of September 2021)

So it’s important that you find out from official sources what your country of residence’s risk classification for Spain is and the rules for vaccinated or unvaccinated travellers to know exactly what rules apply to your situation.

It’s also worth checking whether you can get an antigen test instead as it can be a faster and cheaper alternative to the PCR test as well as the timeframe for when each test should be carried out (usually 72 hours for PCR tests).

READ ALSO: Everything you need to know about getting an antigen test in Spain

Where can I get a PCR test in Spain?

Private clinics, laboratories – and in regions such as Madrid even dental clinics and pharmacies-  all offer PCR tests. 

If you’re staying at your hotel in Spain, you could ask the staff if they can recommend somewhere, and if you want to ask in Spanish, you should say ¿Dónde me puedo hacer una prueba PCR? (Where can I get a PCR test?). 

There’s also using Google or Google maps to find the closest facility offering PCR tests.

Photo: Cesar Manso/AFP

How much does a PCR test cost in Spain?

According to Spanish consumer association OCU, the average price of a PCR test in Spain is €120, although in some clinics it can be as high as €200. 

Depending on where you are, you may also be able to get a PCR test for under €100 so it’s worth shopping around online. You may find results in English but it’s worth googling “precio de prueba PCR” (price of PCR test) and then your location to find all available nearby clinics and labs that perform the tests. 

Is there anything else I should know about getting a PCR test in Spain?

The PCR sample is collected from the patient’s nose and throat with a swab and sent to the laboratory for analysis. Sometimes it’s taken from the nose and not the throat or the other way round. The PCR test doesn’t hurt but it does feel fairly unpleasant. 

You’re likely to get your results back within 24 hours. 

If you test positive you will not be allowed to travel and you will have to quarantine for 15 days. The test will not be repeated. If you want to repeat it, you will have to do another PCR payment.

If you develop Covid-19 symptoms while in Spain, the country’s official Travel Safe tourism page recommends “avoiding any physical contact with another person”. 

“Next, inform the local healthcare authorities immediately via the information helpline of the region you are in. If they deem you have Covid symptoms, public health workers will offer you the PCR test free of cost.

“In all cases, Spanish emergency healthcare services are guaranteed and provided at hospitals and healthcare centres,” Spain’s Tourism Ministry confirms.  

Some regions of Spain such as the Canary Islands offer access to free insurance with Covid-19 coverage for international travellers and tourists.

READ ALSO: Which regions in Spain offer free insurance to tourists who get Covid-19 while on holiday?


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