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Spain to require visitors from high-risk countries to present negative PCR tests

Airport officials carrying out health checks and collecting passenger information at Barcelona airport on 28 June 2020. (TP)

Latest update to this report: Spain changes Covid-19 test requirements for travellers

Also read: Coronavirus in Spain figures (5 Jan)

Spain has announced that it will begin requiring travellers from countries severely affected by Coronavirus (Covid-19) to show a negative result from a PCR test upon their arrival via airports or ports. The measures will not be applied at land borders with France and Portugal.

In order to be allowed into Spain, visitors will have to show they have tested negative for Covid-19 within 72 hours prior to arrival, if asked to do so. The new measure will come into effect from 23 November. Spain’s Foreign Minister Arancha González Laya has said that failure to show a negative PCR test, if required to do so, could result in a fine of up to €6,000.

For visitors arriving from EU countries or from those within the Schengen area, the criteria for a country of high risk will be determined by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). The ECDC publishes weekly maps with the current risk status of each country using a traffic light system of green, orange or red, as determined by the 14-day incidence and positivity rates of Covid-19. At the moment [11 Nov], only Norway, Finland and parts of Greece are not ‘red zone’ (high risk) countries.

The following criteria determine whether a country is ‘green, orange or red’:

For all other countries, the reference to evaluate risk will be 150 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days, according to criteria of the World Health Organization (WHO).

From 23 November, passengers filling out a control form before entering Spain will find an extra question asking if they have a negative PCR test result from the previous 72 hours. Authorities may then request to see the result of the test, if required to have been done for entry purposes, depending on where the visitor has arrived from. It must be an original document, in Spanish or in English. It can be presented in paper or digitally

Existing controls such as temperature checks, other paperwork and visual observations will continue as before, and which have been carried out since June.

The Spanish Health Ministry is to advise tour operators, airlines, maritime companies and companies dedicated to international transport that they must inform their customers of the need to have this PCR test to enter Spain.

ALSO READ: Details of curfews & restrictions for all regions of Spain during ‘State of Alarm’

Click here for all previous reports on: Coronavirus in Spain

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