Spain has told the UK it must reduce its rate of coronavirus infection before Brits are allowed to return to the country’s top tourism destination.
Tourism minister Maria Reyes Maroto told Spanish media at the weekend tourists from the UK will not take part in Spain’s tourism upcoming test runs.
Spain plans to reopen to international visitors in July with its 14-day quarantine on arrival requirement set to be lifted on 1 July.
However, like Greece and Cyprus, the country has warned the UK’s rate of coronavirus infection currently remains too high for it to allow British tourists to return.
"There, the health situation still has to improve," said Maroto. "For us, it is important to guarantee people arrive healthy and leave healthy."
Maroto said people from Germany and Europe’s Nordic countries were likely to be the first to return.
The country’s pilot scheme will see tourists tested for coronavirus upon arrival before being isolated at their hotel for six hours while they await the result.
Spain’s Balearic and Canary islands will host the tests, with regional governments ready to reopen tourism infrastructure under strict new guidelines.
The Canaries has called for a system of "safe corridors" to allow tourism to resume, while negating quarantine requirements.
Tui has said it is preparing to resume operations in Spain, while national press reports state Spain has entered into discussion with Tui and Jet2holidays over a resumption of tourism.
More than 200 travel firms have backed a plea for home secretary Priti Patel to scrap the UK government’s 14-day quarantine on arrival proposals, due to come into force on 8 June, and replace them instead with bilateral "air bridges" – agreements with countries with lower rates of coronavirus infection to forego any self-isolation requirement upon return.