The Spanish holidays could start again soon for Brits if a vaccination passport testing program is successful.
The country’s tourism minister, Maria Reyes Maroto, said Spain wanted to be a pioneer in introducing immunity passes and confirmed that her ministry was following the idea.
The Balearic Islands, which include popular holiday destinations such as Mallorca and Ibiza, have already announced that they will be the first to welcome foreign tourists with vaccination certificates.
The regional governors asked Ms. Maroto to start a pilot project for visitors who were encountered at a meeting in Madrid last month.
The Spanish Minister of Tourism would not say where or when the pilot project would start.
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However, she confirmed: “We want a variety of instruments for reactive mobility.
“All of this will allow us to have a clear horizon and hope so that we can be more optimistic about the relaunch of international travel.
“We want to be pioneers and are the most active advocates of digital vaccine passports to facilitate international mobility.”
She also referred to last year’s pilot project in the Balearic Islands, which was attended by thousands of German tourists who were admitted to the islands a week before the official reopening of the borders to foreign holidaymakers after a three-month closure.
She added, “We pioneered the Balearic Travel Corridor by becoming the only country to open during the pandemic and we are working to pioneer and hit the accelerator again.”
“We have set up an inter-ministerial commission chaired by Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez to facilitate the use of digital Covid certificates and to launch a pilot project to test their effectiveness if the pandemic allows.”
Ms. Maroto commented on the submission of a report on the competitiveness of Spanish sun and sand destinations.
She spoke days after the country’s Secretary of State for Tourism, Fernando Valdes, said Spain was ready to examine bilateral agreements and corridors “with third countries” if the vaccination passport program does not go into effect.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she intends to publish a draft law on March 17 on a “passport” that vaccinated EU citizens could use to travel for business or tourism.
EU sources said the British are “welcome” in Europe.
Spain, Portugal and Greece are known to be ardent supporters of vaccination records, but other countries, including Belgium, have reservations that it could lead to discrimination against those who do not receive the sting.
Mr Valdes said: “The way to make travel possible in Europe has to be decided at the European Union level. However, if these decisions cannot be made, we will think about other solutions, such as corridors, green corridors with third countries, that can help us restart tourist flows. “
He told Brits earlier this year: “We look forward to seeing you again.
“Great Britain is one of the countries with the highest vaccination rates in the world. We want at least 70 percent of our adult population to be immune by summer. So I would say to the British: ‘Keep your expectations open about your holidays in Spain. We look forward to seeing you again. “
In 2019, 18 million Brits chose Spain for their holidays, well above second and third place Germany and France with around 11 million tourists each.