Spain holidays: Benidorm hotels ‘forced’ to close due to lack of British tourists

Travel ban: Epidemiologist says ‘closing borders does not work’

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Every British tourist over the age of 12 must be double vaccinated to enter Spain for a holiday. Many British teenagers are not double vaccinated yet.

The strict rule has meant that many British families have had to cancel holidays in Spain this Christmas.

Other tourists have made the decision to cancel due to the high price of PCR tests for a whole family.

The HOSBEC hotel association said some of its member hotels in Benidorm had been forced to close after British customers cancelled reservations.

The group’s general secretary, Nuria Montez, said: “Mobility is very complicated due to Spanish and UK rules.

“Very few British people are arriving and that’s forcing the closure of many hotels.

“If a family of four has to undergo PCR tests, despite being fully vaccinated, that could cost over £400 which is not feasible.”

Montez said that Spain’s vaccination rule for over 12s was “not good news” for the industry.

She said: “Things have now become very complicated and reservations being cancelled and tour operators have suspended trips involving families with children, many of which are over the Christmas period.”

Those in the tourism industry recently claimed that a British tour operator had cancelled over 60,000 holidays this Christmas.

Benidrom has already introduced a Covid pass which requires tourists and residents to demonstrate proof of vaccination or a negative test result.

The pass is used for venues with capacity for more than 50 people as well as for care homes and hospitals.

Some officials in Benidorm had blamed British tourists for an increase in cases in the holiday resort.

The island of Tenerife, an extremely popular winter holiday destination for British tourists, recently raised its threat level.

Tenerife recorded 1,000 new cases in 24 hours which is the highest ever since the start of the pandemic.

A spokesperson for the Canary Government, Antonio Olivera, said the situation was “very worrying”.

Health officials said that the appearance of the Omicron variant has been a major contribution to the rise in cases on Tenerife.

British tourists must be fully vaccinated to travel to Spain and should check the UK Government travel advice before leaving.

Tourists must take a pre-departure test before travelling back to the UK from Spain.

They must also take a PCR test on or before day two after arrival in the UK and self-isolate until they receive the result.

As the Omicron variant sparks fear across the world, France has banned British tourists from entry unless they have a compelling reason.

Additional reporting by Rita Sobot.

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