The Spanish Government has clarified the position regarding the phased easing of the lockdown provisions. Below is the information so far:
What reopens when? – Phase 1
- Small businesses and hotels can open from 11thMay (18thMay Andalucia), but social distancing will remain in force.
- Though some schools will reopen in late May, most will stay closed until the new term begins in September.
- Restaurants can start opening their terraces from 11th, but they must not be more than 50% full during the first phase. Social “bubbles” of no more than 10 persons allowed.
- Religious services can resume on a limited basis from 11 May, at no more than one third of the building’s capacity.
- Theatres and cinemas will reopen from late May, but again must be no more than a third full.
- Hotels and tourist accommodations will be allowed to open, excluding the common areas and swimming pools.
- Shops under 400 m2 will be allowed to open from May 11th, with two metres (6ft) between shoppers. Those over 400 m2 will be restricted to use of 400 m2 floor space.
- Currently Phase 1 does not apply to Madrid area and Barcelona, they remain at Phase 0.
Activities in Phase 2 – 25thMay
- Social contact. The number of people who can meet for active and nature tourism activities is increased to 20, and congresses, business meetings and conferences are allowed provided there are no more than 50 attendees, with two-metre social distancing observed.
- Mobility. Citizens are permitted to move freely within their province, island or territorial unit.
- Shopping centres can reopen, provided capacity is limited to 30% of common areas and 40% in each of the commercial premises located inside. Customers will not be allowed in common areas, apart from to move from one store to another.
- Hostelry. Bars and restaurants can reopen their interior dining areas, apart from nightclubs and night time bars, provided capacity is limited to 40%. Dining inside can only take place sat at a table, or groups of tables, and preferably via prior appointment. Self-service at a bar is not permitted.
- Hotels. The common areas of hotels and tourist accommodation can reopen their common areas, provided capacity is limited to a third.
- Cinemas and theatres. All cinemas, theatres, auditoriums and similar spaces can reopen, provided that seats are pre-assigned and capacity is limited to a third.
- Concerts. At open-air concerts, the public must be seated, observing social distancing, with capacity at a third and limited to 400 people.
Each phase of the de-escalation plan will last at least two weeks, and in the best-case scenario, the process will last eight weeks in all of Spain. Additional news from the Spanish Government is that the use of face masks in Spain will be obligatory beyond just on public transportation, Health Minister Salvador Illa announced on Sunday (17thMay). A number of regional governments had been calling for the measure for some time now, in a bid to further control the spread of the coronavirus. Illa said today that, given the unanimous agreement of regional chiefs, an order will be published on the issue in the coming days, although he gave no further details.
From the current information at hand it is looking likely that some timeshare resorts could open by May 11th, however to our knowledge no resorts have reopened. Club la Costa, the largest resort on the Costa del Sol, has stated it will remain closed until the 31stMay. TCA will of course keep our readers informed as and when any concrete news is forthcoming.
Even taking the above into account it must also be remembered that when Spanish borders reopen there will be the introduction of a 14 day quarantine procedure for arriving visitors which for most will rule out any enjoyment of a holiday. As a further point, what happens to timeshare owners who only have 1 week if they have to isolate for 2 weeks? Their holiday is a non starter!
Please note: Any relaxation of the lockdown is subject to the progress of the reduction in Covid 19 incidences and could change or be adjusted at short notice. The current state of alarm in Spain is due to expire on May 24. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez made his weekly televised address on Saturday afternoon (16th May) to offer an update on the current situation regarding the pandemic. He announced that he would be requesting a last extension to the state of alarm, this time for a month, and also said that the de-escalation process could be completed in half of the country by the beginning of summer.
ADDENDUM: The Spanish Health Ministry announced on Monday (18thMay) evening that the use of face masks in Spain will be obligatory in closed spaces and on the street where two-metre safe distances cannot be respected.
Posted on: May 19, 2020
For more information regarding this article or assistance in any other timeshare related issues please contact the TCA on 0203 519 3808 or email: info@TimeshareConsumerAssociation.org.uk