Tourists jetting off to Majorca and Ibiza could see some major changes to the way they enjoy their holiday, with a day trip to the beach being overhauled in favour of social distancing. Both regions have been given the green light to put time limits on some of their most popular beaches if the islands see a surge in tourists.
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With Spain’s EU borders now open, and further border relaxations to come from July 1, some of the countries holiday hotspots are anticipating a surge in visitor numbers.
However, the Balearic government has drawn up a long list of regulations for tourists, local residents and businesses to adhere to.
One of the main focal points is social distancing, set to continue for the months ahead to prevent another outbreak of the coronavirus.
A one and a half metre distance should be kept between people from separate households, and masks should be worn where this can not be guaranteed.
The new beach regulations have been put in place to ensure social distancing as sunbathers flock to Spain’s once empty shorelines.
The new regulations say each beach user should have a space of four square metres and the distance between groups (a maximum of 25 people) must be one and a half metres. But the regulations add: “Councils are allowed to set access and capacity restrictions in order to respect interpersonal distance and set time limits for staying on beaches.”
On the mainland, Benidorm council has already indicated that if the crowds get too much on the resort’s famous beaches, it will consider dividing the day in two, with sunbathing and swimming shifts first in the morning and then in the afternoon in a bid to double capacity.
Other specific tourist measures are also being imposed under the new norm.
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Restaurant and bar-cafeterias must limit their capacity to 75 percent in indoor spaces.
In addition, all entertainment and catering establishments have to close at 2am, while bars must close at 10pm.
Dance halls, nightclubs, concert cafes, beach clubs and bars can only open if they have capacity for less than 300 people.
The rest will be required to close their dancefloors, where tables can be placed and customers will have to take a seat.
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The common areas of hotels and tourist accommodation cannot exceed 75 percent of their capacity and entertainment activities or group classes must be designed and planned with a maximum capacity of 25 people.
In Magaluf, the West End of Sant Antoni and certain areas of Playa de Palma, there is a blanket ban on the opening of all nightclubs, regardless of their size.
They can open their terraces provided no more than 100 people are seated and social distancing is respected.
Spain announced yesterday (June 20) that Britons will be allowed to travel to Spain without the need for a 14-day quarantine period from June 21.
In line with this, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) updated its travel advice for Britons hoping to visit Spain.
It wrote: “Spain’s borders are open to European Union and Schengen-area countries, and travellers from the UK.
“Arrivals from the United Kingdom are not required to self-isolate on arrival but will be subject to a series of three health checks. From June 21 travel between regions is permitted.
“Face masks are obligatory in public spaces. Social distancing measures and other safety precautions must be observed at all times.”
Additional reporting by Rita Sobot
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