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COVID-19 RULES

REMINDER: The Covid restrictions in your region of Spain in February

Covid-19 infection rates remain high in Spain but have been declining over the past month. This means that most regions in Spain are relaxing restrictions. Here are the Covid rules in your part of Spain. 

A waiter checks Covid pass at a bar in Spain
Covid pass Spain. Photo: ANDER GILLENEA / AFP

Spain is now finally coming out of the sixth wave of Covid-19, which was largely caused by the Omicron variant. 

Covid-19 infection rates have been in steady decline over the month causing many regions to loosen restrictions and scrap the use of the Covid health passes to enter establishments. 

Like it’s been for much of the pandemic, each region is in charge of its own restrictions, so closures, curfews, capacity limits, closing times, and the Covid health pass requirements will depend on where you are in Spain. 

READ ALSO – MAP: Which regions in Spain still require a Covid pass for daily affairs?

Andalusia

Bars and restaurants: There are currently no limits on capacity or opening hours.

Nightlife: There are no restrictions on capacity or closing times.

Covid health pass: It is currently required for hotels, nightclubs, bars, restaurants, cafés, hospitals and care homes. Under 12s are exempt. 

Aragón

Bars and restaurants: There are no limits on capacity or opening hours. Hospitality venues are allowed to stay open until the time that their licence states. Consuming at the bar is allowed. 

Nightlife: There are no limits on capacity or opening hours. Nightlife venues are allowed to stay open until the time that their licence states. Consuming at the bar is allowed. 

Covid health pass: As of February 4th, the Covid pass is only required to visit hospitals and care homes. 

Asturias

The Asturian Government has decided to increase the capacity in open facilities to 85 percent and to 75 percent in closed venues for national football games.

Bars and restaurants: There are no limits on capacity or opening hours. 

Nightlife: Nightlife venues reopened on January 28th. Drinking at the bar is allowed, but masks have to be worn on the dance floors. 

Covid health pass: The use Covid certificates were scrapped from January 28th. 

Balearic Islands

Bars and restaurants:  There are currently no time or capacity restrictions for bars, cafés and restaurants on the Mediterranean islands. 

Nightlife: There are also no limits on capacity or opening times for nightlife venues. 

Covid health pass: Until at least February 28th, a Covid certificate will be required in all nightlife venues, restaurants, bars, cafes and other spaces, regardless of capacity. It’s also requested in cinemas, gyms and theatres. The Balearic high court has also endorsed the health document requirement for health workers, or three weekly tests. 

Basque Country

The Basque Government will lift its health emergency status on February 14th, when all current restrictions will end.

Bars and restaurants: Currently hospitality establishments must close by 1am and there is an indoor capacity limit set at 60 percent. 10 are allowed to sit per table. 

Nightlife: Like bars and restaurants, nightlife venues can only open until 1am and have a capacity limit of 60 percent. 

Covid health pass: Covid passes are no longer required in the Basque Country as of February 4th. 

Canary Islands

Bars and restaurants: Authorities in the Atlantic archipelago have a complex system in place where the opening hours and the capacity of hospitality establishments – both indoors and outdoors – is determined by the alert level of each island and whether the owners request the Covid health pass from customers. If they do require it, they can operate with the restrictions a level under which their island finds itself, which means more capacity and longer opening hours. 

Nightlife: The same complex rules apply to nightclubs in the Canaries. As things stand on February 14th, Tenerife and Gran Canaria are at level 4 and all other islands are at level 3.

Covid health pass: The Canarian Government wanted to extend the use of a voluntary COVID passport to allow premises that required it to operate with more capacity, but it has not received judicial endorsement.

Cantabria

Out of the102 municipalities in Cantabria, 64 are at alert level 3, while the remaining 38 are at level 2. In level 3 all the towns with more than 5,000 inhabitants, such as Santander, the capital, where nightlife venues remain closed.

Bars and restaurants: For places in level 1 or 2 tables are limited to 10 people and in level 3 capacity is limited to 75 percent and 6 people per table. They must have CO2 meters installed. 

Nightlife: For those in level 1 and 2, nightclubs can only open if they have CO2 meters. The indoor capacity for nightclubs on level 1 is 75 percent and for those on level 2 is 50 percent. A maximum of 10 per table is set for level 1 and 2 nightclubs. For places in level 3 nightclubs must close.

Covid health pass: The Covid pass is no longer required in Cantabria as of January 19th. 

READ ALSO: Spain’s Cantabria scraps Covid health pass for being ‘ineffective’

Castilla-La Mancha

Bars and restaurants: No capacity restrictions or time limits.

Nightlife: No capacity restrictions or time limits. 

Covid health pass: Castilla-La Mancha’s government has not implemented the requirement of the Covid certificate for daily affairs or any establishment in the region.

Castilla y León

Bars and restaurants: No restrictions on capacity or opening hours. 

Nightlife: No capacity restrictions or time limits. 

Covid health pass: Castilla y Leon’s government is also one of the few regional governments in Spain that have decided it isn’t necessary to require the Covid certificate for daily affairs or any establishments in the region.

Catalonia 

Bars and restaurants: There are no capacity limits inside bars and restaurants and they can stay open until their normal operating hours. 

Nightlife: Nightlife venues reopened on February 11th. Masks are mandatory, but dance floors are open. 

Covid health pass: These are no longer required to enter any venue in Catalonia. 

Extremadura

Bars and restaurants: There is no official capacity limit but Extremaduran authorities do recommend that 80 percent capacity indoors is observed and a maximum of ten people per table and other gatherings. 

Nightlife: The same rules and recommendations that apply to bars and restaurants apply to nightclubs in the western region.

Covid health pass: The health document isn’t required for daily affairs in Extremadura.

Galicia

Bars and restaurants: Hospitality venues can have 100 percent capacity indoors and on terraces, with a maximum of eight people per table indoors and 15 outdoors. They can resume normal closing hours. 

Nightlife: Nightclubs can stay open until 4am on weekdays and 5am on weekends. The number of people allowed per table is the same for bars and restaurants. 

Covid health pass: Until February 27th, it will be required to access restaurants, nightlife venues, bars, cafés after 9pm, hostels, hospitals, gyms, closed sports facilities, indoor swimming pools, care homes and mass events, including those with a capacity of more than 200 people indoors and that sell food or beverages.

Madrid

Bars and restaurants: No time or capacity limits, being served at the bar is allowed but only sitting. Smoking isn’t allowed on terraces unless you can keep a distance from others.

Nightlife:  Madrid’s nightclubs will have normal opening hours and capacity. Dancing is allowed indoors – without consuming alcohol – and outdoors with a mask. Concerts and shows where the crowd is standing are allowed but eating and drinking may only be allowed in authorised areas.

Covid health pass: The health document isn’t required in the Spanish capital.

Murcia

The Murcian authorities have announced that dance floors will reopen from February 14th if the epidemiological situation allows.

Bars and restaurants: Murcia’s bar and restaurant can open up to 100 percent capacity in all risk levels when Covid health passes are requested by the establishments. The capacity limit is set at 75 percent for those that don’t.

Nightlife: Nightlife venues follow the same rules as bars and restaurants. 

Covid health pass: Certificates are voluntary so that establishments can ask for them if they want to can open up to full capacity. 

Navarre

From Tuesday February 15th, there will be no more restrictions on opening times and the use of Covid pass will also be eliminated. 

Bars and restaurants: Currently, establishments must close by 1am and no more than 10 are allowed per table. Smoking on terraces is not allowed unless a distance of 2 metres can be kept.

Nightlife: Venues must also close by 1am. 

Covid health pass: Covid certificates are mandatory to access restaurants with more than 60 diners and nightlife establishments. They are also required in hotels, gyms and care homes. 

La Rioja 

Bars and restaurants: Establishments can resume normal opening hours. 

Nightlife: Nightlife venues can resume normal opening hours. 

Covid health pass: Until Monday February 14th, Covid certificates will be required to access nightlife establishments; restaurants with more than 50 diners; hospitals, care homes and outdoor events with more than 1,000 people when food or drink is consumed. From February 15th onwards, it will only be required for hospitals and care homes. 

Valencia region 

Bars and restaurants: There are no capacity or time limitations for hospitality venues in the region, apart from a maximum of ten people per table.

Nightlife: The same applies to nightclubs in the eastern region, which will have a limit of ten people per table.

Covid health pass: It’s mandatory for now to access leisure and hospitality venues including bars and restaurants, nightclubs, music festivals and events with more than 500 attendees, for hospital and care home visits, cinemas, gyms, etc. 

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TRAVEL NEWS

TRAVEL: Spain extends ban on unvaccinated non-EU tourists until June 15th

Britons, Americans and other non-EU/Schengen travellers who are neither vaccinated nor recently recovered from Covid-19 will not be able to visit Spain for tourism for at least another month, Spanish authorities have confirmed.

TRAVEL: Spain extends ban on unvaccinated non-EU tourists until June 15th

The Spanish government has again extended temporary restrictions for non-essential travel (including tourism) from most third countries for another month, until June 15th 2022.

That means that non-EU/Schengen adults who reside outside of the EU and who haven’t been fully vaccinated against Covid-19 or recovered from the illness in the past six months cannot go on holiday to Spain during the next month. 

Therefore, Spain continues to not accept negative Covid-19 tests from British, American, Canadian, Indian or other third-country nationals who are neither vaccinated nor recently recovered. 

There had been hopes that the shorter two-week extension to the ban on non-essential travel issued on April 30th, as well as talk of the “orderly and progressive reopening” of the country’s borders, would mean that unvaccinated third country nationals would be allowed into Spain in May.

But in the end, Saturday May 14th’s state bulletin confirmed that Spain will keep the same measures in place for another 31 days, stating that they “will eventually be modified to respond to a change of circumstances or to new recommendations in the context of the European Union”.

Spain’s ban on unvaccinated non-EU travellers is arguably the last major Covid-19 restriction in place in the country, and other EU countries such as Sweden, Poland, Denmark, Czech Republic and Ireland are allowing unvaccinated tourists in.

This latest announcement by the Spanish government marks the umpteenth extension to non-essential travel from outside of the EU/Schengen area over the past two years of the pandemic, the previous one was due to expire on May 15th. 

But perhaps this extension is the most surprising, as the Spanish health ministry has modified its rulebook to treat Covid-19 like the flu and the country wants to recover the tourism numbers it had pre-pandemic.

The ban affects unvaccinated British tourists in particular, as the UK is still the biggest tourism market for Spain, but Britons’ non-EU status means they have to follow the same Covid-19 travel rules as other third-country nationals.

Vaccinated or recovered third-country travellers

Those who were fully vaccinated against Covid-19 more than two weeks prior to travel to Spain will need to show a valid vaccination certificate with an EMA or WHO approved vaccine.

If their initial vaccination treatment was completed more than 9 months ago (270 days), they’ll need to show they’ve had a Covid-19 booster shot. 

As for non-EU/Schengen travellers who have recovered from Covid-19 in the past six months, they will need to show a recovery certificate to prove this

According to Spain’s Health Ministry, recovery certificates accepted as valid are those “issued at least 11 days after the first positive NAAT or RAT, and up to a maximum of 180 days after the date of sampling”, as well as being issued by the relevant authorities.

Exceptions

In early February, Spanish authorities also decided to start allowing unvaccinated non-EU/Schengen teenagers aged 12 to 17 to visit Spain for tourism if they provided a negative PCR.

Spain continues to have a small list of low-risk third countries whose travellers visiting Spain for non-essential reasons can enter without having to present proof of Covid-19 testing, recovery or vaccination. 

This is updated weekly and can be checked here by clicking on the PDF under “risk and high risk countries/areas”. 

READ ALSO: Can I travel to my second home in Spain if I’m not vaccinated?

If you’re not vaccinated or recovered, the exceptions for travel to Spain from third countries that fall under the non-essential travel restrictions are:

  • You are a resident in the EU or Schengen country.
  • You have a visa for a long duration stay in an EU or Schengen country.
  • You work in transport, such as airline staff or are in a maritime profession.
  • You work in diplomatic, consular, international organisations, military or civil protection or are a member of a humanitarian organisation.
  • You have a student visa for a country in the EU or Schengen zone.
  • You are a highly qualified worker or athlete whose work cannot be postponed or carried out remotely.
  • You are travelling for duly accredited imperative family reasons.
  • You are allowed entry due to force majeure or on humanitarian grounds.
  • And as mentioned earlier in the article, if you have a vaccination certificate that Spain’s Ministry of Health recognises, as well as for any accompanying minors (unless they’re under 12 years of age).

READ ALSO: When do I need to fill out Spain’s Covid health control form for travel?

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