What you need to know about Spain’s travel rules

Updated July 29, 2022
Published May 20, 2022

By Steph Marinkovic

Seeking sun, sea and sangria this summer? With Brexit changes, Covid-19 entry requirements and new policies for all-inclusive drinks at some resorts, we look at everything you need to know about Spain’s travel rules.

What are the entry requirements for Spain?

Just days after it was announced that Spain’s vaccination entry requirement would be in place until June 15, the country backtracked on the rules. Now, adults can enter with any of the following:

  • A vaccination certificate that shows a booster shot, or second jab administered no more than 270 days – but at least 14 days – ago.
  • Proof of Covid-19 recovery in the last six months (the UK proof of Covid-19 recovery record will be accepted).
  • A negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to departure.
  • A negative antigen test taken within 24 hours prior to departure.

Children under 12 are not subject to any Covid-19 entry rules.

Do you need to wear a mask in Spain?

Like many places across Europe, Spain dropped most of its mask rules earlier in the year. Now, masks are only compulsory on public transport and in taxis, or when visiting a hospital, medical centre or a care or nursing home. The Spanish government also recommends masks in other enclosed spaces.

It's likely that you will also need to wear a mask on your flight to Spain, despite the EU recently changing its guidance around masks on planes.

How long do you need on your passport to visit Spain?

If you haven’t travelled since Brexit, due to the pandemic or otherwise, remember that the passport rules for EU travel have changed.

Now, your passport cannot be older than ten years on the day you enter the EU, and you will need at least three months left on your passport from the day after you intend to leave. Some travellers are getting caught out at the airport with this – especially as former UK passport renewal rules allowed you to carry over ‘unused’ months on your passport, giving some passports more than ten years of validity.

Check your passport now as the HM Passport Office is facing delays with renewals.

Do you need to show proof of funds to go to Spain?

You may need to show proof of funds to enter Spain – but you’re generally unlikely to be asked, says Manuel Butler, Spanish Tourist Office UK director.

“When entering Spain, these checks are not systematically carried out for every traveller,” he says.

The reason for the change? Brexit. When the UK left the EU, we became a ‘third country’ and are now subject to different requirements. That includes showing proof of funds – which Spain sets at €100 (£85) per person per day, and a minimum of €900 (£760) – as well as proof of accommodation and an onward ticket.

“This is not a new requirement,” says Manuel Butler. “[It] has been in place for some time for visitors from outside of the European Union or Schengen area.”

So far, there have been few reports of people actually being asked for any of this additional documentation. Have your onward ticket details and proof of accommodation (say, a hotel booking confirmation) to hand when you approach the Spanish border just in case.

It’s also worth noting that the UK has similar rules for many travellers. 

What are the new all-inclusive rules for the Balearic Islands?

Not-so-new legislation, introduced in early 2020 by the Balearic Islands government, restricts drinks at some resorts in Majorca and Ibiza to just three at lunch and three at dinner each day.

However, it’s only Magaluf, El Arenal and Playa de Palma in Majorca, and Sant Antoni de Portmany in Ibiza, that are subject to the rules. If you’re staying in these resorts on an all-inclusive holiday and want any additional drinks, you will need to pay for them.

The legislation was introduced to crack down on boozy bad behaviour by tourists. Balearic Islands Tourism minister Iago Negueruela said of the rule: “We want British tourists. We don't want this type of tourism… We will have zero tolerance for tourism excesses.”

In addition, organized pub crawls, two-for-one drinks, and happy hours have been banned in some areas. Shops will also stop selling alcohol between 9:30pm and 8am.

Can you change your holiday if you’re affected by the all-inclusive rules?

Holiday operators including TUI, easyJet and loveholidays, have flagged resorts affected by the all-inclusive limits, so it’s important to check the fine print in the board basis section before booking your holiday. You may be able to amend your holiday if your chosen resort has limits on drinks, but you will be subject to the terms and conditions of your booking and will need to pay any difference in price. 

Are holidays to Spain worth it this summer?

Yes! Wherever you choose to go, respect the rules and wear your mask where required, and you’ll still have a brilliant Spanish summer holiday.

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