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UK adds Spain to quarantine list: what does this mean for vacationers?

The UK removed Spain from the list of safe countries to travel to after concerns were raised that the European country had a second wave of coronavirus infections.

t means that those returning from the country will have to isolate themselves for two weeks after returning to the UK.

This is what it means for vacationers:

– When should holidaymakers isolate themselves?

The measures will take effect tonight at midnight, meaning that all returning travelers will have to isolate for 14 days from Sunday.

The quarantine applies to people returning to any of the four countries of the UK – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

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The UK government has discouraged all non-essential travel to Spain (Lauren Hurley / PA)

– Why is it being brought in now?

The government said the move follows a “significant change” over the past week in both the level and rate of change in confirmed Covid-19 cases in Spain.

The country has reported more than 900 new daily infections in the past two days.

Catalonia became the newest region to crack down on nightlife, trying to stop new clusters of infection.

The wealthy northeastern region – home to Barcelona – ordered all nightclubs to close for 15 days and put a curfew on bars in the greater area of ​​Barcelona and other towns around Lleida that have become infectious hot zones at midnight.

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Authorities tackle nightlife in Catalonia (Chris Ison / PA)

– What should people do if they are already in Spain?

People currently on holiday in Spain are encouraged to follow local rules, return home and consult the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) travel advice pages at gov.uk for more information.

The FCO advises those already traveling in Spain not to leave at this time.

– What should holidaymakers do if they have booked a holiday to Spain?

The FCO discourages all essential travel to mainland Spain.

Holiday operator Tui has said it will cancel all planned holidays to Spain in response to the announcement and that customers will be contacted to discuss the options.

Abta, the UK travel industry association, has advised customers to travel to the country soon to contact their travel provider.

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Tui said it will cancel all planned holidays to Spain (Peter Byrne / PA)

Meanwhile, airline easyJet said it planned to operate its full flight schedule in the coming days.

A spokeswoman said: “Customers who no longer wish to travel can transfer their flights at no change cost or receive a voucher worth the booking.

“If flights are canceled before later in August, customers will be notified of their options, including changing to an alternative flight for free, receiving a voucher or requesting a refund.”

– Does the quarantine apply if the holidaymaker has been on a Spanish island?

Quarantine measures apply to those returning from mainland Spain, the Canary Islands (Tenerife, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Palma, La Gomera, El Hierro and La Graciosa) and the Balearic Islands, such as Mallorca and Ibiza, the Department confirmed for transport.