The Spanish government expects tourism in Spain to rebound in 2022 after the Omega coronavirus set back the country’s travel industry. They are optimistic but promise more efforts to help tour operators, hoteliers, restaurants, and bars who rely on tourism rebound to pre covid levels. In 2019, before COVID, Spain was the world’s second most visited country after France, averaging 83 million international visitors. However, these figures drastically dipped as COVID spread across the globe.
Trends of Tourism in Spain
In 2021, GDP in Spain from tourism recovered just over 50% to generate 88 million euros. This increased significantly compared to 36 million in 2020. However, companies suffered setbacks from Omega in December. Trends show airlines, city hotels, and major museums in cities that attract large crowds suffered the most. While golf courses, ski resorts, small hotels, car rental and general outdoor activities weathered the storm.
Despite this, optimistic experts in Spain say tourism will rebound, with government backing, simply because tourism accounts for 10.5% of the Spanish economy in good years. While Spain typically sees tourist figures drop during winter months, experts predict April will see the start of recovery as sectors open doors for the primary tourism season. Historically, Spain’s most significant tourists are Germans, Brits, and French.
Tourism During COVID
In response to Omega, Spain changed its travel restrictions. As of now, fully vaccinated travellers can enter Spain without a negative COVID test unless they come from countries Spain identifies as high risk. The list changes regularly, depending on the latest results, so travellers should always check before leaving. Currently, Spain identified high-risk countries as Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Flights are suspended until the end of January unless passengers prove exceptional circumstances to travel. Even in this case, those passengers need to show proof of vaccination, negative COVID test, and quarantine for ten days upon arrival in Spain. On day seven of their quarantine, negative tests determine if they can move about. Non vaccinated travellers from non-EU or Schengen countries must show a negative PCR test no older than three days before departure.
All tourists to Spain must complete health control forms to generate a QR code to show upon arrival. For vaccinated EU passengers who had COVID and recovered, they accept the European Union’s Digital Covid Certificate. Tourists should expect visual examination and temperature checks upon arrival.
COVID In Spain
As of January 2022, Spain reported 7.9 million infections, 90,600 deaths, and an 80% vaccination rate. COVID rules enforce masks even in outdoor destinations, but travellers should check local restrictions as these differ from region to region via the official Spanish tourism website.
Top Visited Tourist Places in Spain
Beach holidays contribute the most towards the Spanish tourism industry. Since Spain’s eastern and southern coasts receive the most amount of sun and higher temperatures, many tourists flock to resorts along those coasts. Popular places include….
Costa Del Sol: Comprising several of Spain’s top beach resorts, including Gibraltar, Marbella, Torremolinos, and Malaga, the Mediterranean Costa del Sol borders offers clear waters, fine, white sand, and several outdoor tourism activities.
Costa Calida: Belonging to the Murcia province, the Mediterranean Costa Calida comprises several exciting tourism destinations, including historical attractions and modern resort communities. The top visited city of La Manga features 22 kilometres of sandy beaches, and the Mar Menor warm waters, Europe’s largest saltwater lagoon, attract water sports fanatics.
Costa Blanca: Translating into White Coast, Costa Blanca, Europe’s most visited coastline, includes famous Alicante stretching for over 200 kilometres. Beaches, parks, and golf appeal to tourists. Famous for crystal waters and cultural sites, art museums and galleries depict Spanish art and boost tourism in Spain.