Spanish Tourist Office (UK) outlines COVID-19 statistics

Following the UK’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office advice against all but essential travel to Spain, Javier Piñanes, director of the Spanish Tourist Office in the UK, outlines the latest coronavirus statistics in Spain and reinforces the destination’s position as a ‘safe travel destination’.

Javier Piñanes said: “Outbreaks in Spain are highly localised and our regions are taking swift, decisive and forceful control measures. The outbreaks are mainly concentrated in two autonomous communities (Aragon and Catalonia) that accumulate approximately 60% of the total case.

In the last seven days, 10 people have sadly died across the whole of Spain due to coronavirus. However, most holiday destinations have not reported any recent deaths and have low incident rates. Likewise, the increase in cases in Spain is not resulting in a significant rise in hospitalisations. 

Looking specifically at the infection rate over the last seven days (data recorded July 30 2020), many of Spain’s regions report figures well below accumulated rates in other European countries where travel bans have not been imposed.  For example, the rate of accumulated cases in the Canary Islands is just 2.4 per 100,000 people and in the Balearic Islands, it is 11.3. 

Work is being carried out between the Spanish and British authorities so that decisions are made or adjusted based exclusively on epidemiological criteria. Many popular destinations in Spain visited by British tourists, (such as Andalucía, which includes Costa del Sol, the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands, the region of Valencia and many of Spain’s northern regions such as Asturias, Galicia and Cantabria) have infection rates similar or below those reported in the UK. The tourism industry is well prepared to receive visitors and a number of measures have been implemented so that tourism can continue in the safest, secure and hygienic manner. 

Meanwhile, Ángel Vázquez, minister of tourism promotion of Lanzarote commented: “British tourists are huge source market for us and are always welcome in Lanzarote. The change in the UK government’s travel advice will have a strong impact on our tourism sector which has already been hit hard over the last few months. We are looking forward to British visitors being able to visit us again without having to quarantine upon their return to the UK. 

In Lanzarote, we have our own detection protocol for possible cases which continue to be very few. This detection protocol aims to detect positive cases or infections both at the airport on passenger arrival as well as during their stay in their opted accommodation. We urge the UK government to reconsider this quarantine measure for the Canary Islands, in the confidence that they will understand the objective reasons for our request.”

Image Credit: Saswat Saurav Rath

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