COVID-19 testing and vaccinations

Spain Eliminates Pandemic-related Travel Restrictions

Spain dropped all COVID-19-related entry rules on Friday, becoming one of the last European countries to do so.

Going forward, Spain will no longer require travelers from outside the European Union to show proof of vaccination, a negative test, or proof of recovery to enter, according to the government. That puts Spain in line with nearly every other country in Europe that has dropped pandemic-era travel restrictions.

Previously, Spain required travelers 12 and older to show proof of vaccination, proof of a negative COVID-19 test, or proof they contracted COVID-19 and recovered within six months. In September the Spanish government dropped the requirement for travelers to present a health control form upon arrival.

“Once the acute phase of the pandemic has been overcome, surveillance and control measures have been updated at the national level… justified, in large part, by the high levels of immunization achieved in the Spanish population and in neighboring countries, which have led to a significant decrease in severe cases and mortality from SARS-CoV-2,” the government wrote in an advisory.

The new rules mirror those of several other EU countries that have done away with pandemic-era entry rules altogether, like Italy, France, Germany, Iceland, and Ireland.

The relaxed restrictions come on the tail end of Spain’s busiest tourism season: summer and early fall. Over 8.5 million international visitors traveled to Spain in September, an increase of over 87% compared to September 2019, according to SchengenVisa.

Beyond the EU, several other countries have dropped travel restrictions, including Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Earlier this month Japan relaxed many of its COVID-19 restrictions and began to allow international travelers back into the country, although travelers are still required to be triple vaccinated and provide a negative test.

In the United States, however, while pre-arrival testing rules were eliminated in June, international travelers are still required to show proof of being fully vaccinated before boarding a flight to the country.

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