Spain tightening checks on Brits crossing from Gibraltar – must provide ‘valid reason’

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Gibraltar’s government has claimed Spanish police are refusing entry to British tourists at the border unless they can provide a “valid reason” for crossing. One British holidaymaker explained how she was asked to provide evidence she had enough money for her stay in Spain. 

Reports which came in on Monday suggest Policia Nacional officers were at the border asking non-EU nationals, including British passport holders, to provide evidence of onward travel and hotel reservations in Spain before allowing them to cross. 

One British holidaymaker who crossed into Spain on Tuesday said all British holidaymakers were being asked to show proof of funds for the duration of their stay in Spain. 

Julie Quartermaine said: “At the border, we had to prove we had €100 per day per person for the duration of our stay. 

“The woman officer was apologetic but said she had to see enough for the 10 days we planned to be in Spain either in cash or in a bank account.

“I had to pull up my online banking on my phone and show I had at least two grand to cover me and my husband.” 

Julie and her husband had travelled to Gibraltar on an early flight from London Heathrow. 

They planned to spend 10 days at their holiday home in Manilva, on the Costa del Sol.

Julie, who is from Cheam in Surrey added: “It was quite a shock and God knows what would have happened if we couldn’t show we had the funds. 

“There was a man ahead of us in the queue emptying out his wallet to show he had cash.” 

It has been reported the border guards have started to apply more stringent Schengen entry requirements earlier this week. 

The requirements are said to have been put in place with Brexit, for Brits travelling to Europe through an external border. 

A spokesperson for the government said: “Since Monday, we have been hearing about incidents at the border of people with British passports being exposed to stringent Schengen checks.” 

They went on to say the checks were being applied to people with British passports. 

Although those with Gibraltar residence cards or Spanish residency were allowed through without further checks. 

The checks also seemed to affect only those crossing by foot rather than in a vehicle. 

The spokesperson continued: “We are rigorously pursuing clarification of this unannounced change in posture by Spanish authorities. 

“While negotiations are ongoing, we had agreed that things would continue as they were before,” they told Olive Press. 

Those working at the regional Policia Nacional headquarters were unable to explain the situation and denied there had been a shift in policy. 

“We haven’t changed any measure since the December 31 preliminary agreement,” a spokesperson for Policia Nacional commented. 

“The only thing we do is ask for a reason why they want to come to Spain.” 

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