Canary Islands set to force Brits to pay for €20 coronavirus test when holidays resume

The Canary Government is sticking to its guns and wants to safeguard tourists and local people alike from any possible risk of infection  from COVID-19. International borders open on July 1 when Spain’s 14-day quarantine regulation will also be dropped. German holidaymakers are likely to be among the first visitors to the Canaries, which include Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, as it is not yet known when Brits will be able to travel to Spain again.

The decision is dependent on the Spanish government deciding when the coronavirus progress is right and also on the UK government’s own recommendations and current quarantine rule.

The Canary government is consistently saying that it does not want to go down the same route as the Balearics which, from Monday, starts to welcome nearly 11,000 Germans to test drive Mallorca, Ibiza and Menorca’s coronavirus holiday protection protocols.

These visitors will not have to take coronavirus tests before the leave Germany, a move which the Balearic government says has the full backing of the Spanish executive.

Canary president, Ángel Víctor Torres says it is imperative that the islands are considered one of the safest places in the world to take a holiday in the post-coronavirus era which is why they are insisting on tests at source.

He estimates each test will cost about 20 euros but as yet, the sticking point is who will pay.

Mr Torres has reportedly told  the Spanish press that various alternatives are being discussed.

These include:

*The holidaymaker footing the bill at source, ie before they leave their country.

*The cost being shared by the tourist and the government.

*The price of the coronavirus test being added either to their holiday cost or flight.

*Hoteliers or other private institutions helping to foot the bill.

At the moment, it is looking more likely that the Spanish government won’t order all holidaymakers to take  a test as a country-wide policy.

However, autonomous communities are being given more powers to make their own decisions and Mr Torres said the Canary government would continue to lobby Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez to make it compulsory. It is understood this could only be ordered by the EU.

On July 8, the Canary Islands will welcome a flight from Madrid packed with representatives of the World Health Organisation, journalists and travel agents who will spend a week looking round all eight islands to see their coronavirus security protocols for themselves. Every passenger will be asked to take a coronavirus test.

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