UK’s Foreign Office advises against travel to Balearics and Canary Islands despite regions recording half UK’s COVID-19 cases per 100,000


The UK’s Foreign Office (FCO) has updated travel advice for Spain to include warnings against visiting the Balearics and Canary Islands.

The update yesterday, July 27, comes after initial talks to exempt the Spanish islands from the 14-day quarantine imposed on travellers returning to the UK.

News of the talks led to regions of Andalucia and the Valencian Community also petitioning exemption from the quarantine due to their low COVID-19 cases.

Most recent stastitics show the UK recorded 14.7 lab-confirmed coronavirus infections per 100,000 population, according to the European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.

Meanwhile, statistics from the Spanish ministry of health show:

  • 5.8 cases per 100,000 in the Canary Islands.
  • 8 cases per 100,000 in the Balearic Islands.
  • 13.29 cases per 100,000 in the Valencian Community, including Alicante, Benidorm and the Costa Blanca.

The latest, and current, travel advice for Spain reads:

“From 27 July, the FCO advise against all non-essential travel to Spain, including the Balearic and Canary Islands, based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks in the country.

This advice is based on evidence of increases in cases of COVID-19 in several regions, but particularly in Aragon, Navarra and Catalonia (which include the cities of Zaragoza, Pamplona and Barcelona).

The FCO is not advising those already travelling in Spain to leave at this time. Travellers should follow the advice of the local authorities on how best to protect themselves and others, including any measures that they bring in to control the virus.

If you are returning from Spain you will be required to self-isolate on your return to the UK, but the FCO is not advising you to cut short your visit. You should contact your tour operator or airline if you have any questions about your return journey.”

Spain’s minister for external affairs, Arancha González Laya, said during a diplomatic mission to Turkey:

“Spain has maintained, maintains and will maintain that travel exemptions are not a diplomatic exercise, nor a political exercise, and that all decisions in the EU should be based on epidemiological criteria.”

Meanwhile, Spain’s coordinator for health emergencies, Fernando Simon, said during a press briefing yesterday that travel restrictions from the UK and Belgium help to reduce health ‘risks’ in Spain.

He said that both countries are in a similar situation to Spain in terms of new daily COVID-19 infections.

Meanwhile, 195 positive cases in Spain have been tracked directly to 140 different flights from overseas.