Spain hopes the introduction of vaccination passports combined with pre-travel COVID-19 testing will allow British tourists to return to Spanish destinations this summer, a tourism ministry source told Reuters on Tuesday.

“We support the vaccination certificate but not as the only way to recuperate mobility, rather, as one of the means within a portfolio of measures including social distancing, pre-travel tests, mask-wearing,” the source said.

The government has no plans to introduce quarantines on foreign visitors, and was also counting on a wider agreement to be hammered out between Europe and Britain to remove restrictions on non-essential travel, the official added.

Over 2020, as global travel was dramatically curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic, foreign tourism to Spain – one of the world’s most visited countries – fell 80 percent to just 19 million visitors, a level not seen since 1969.

The industry’s contribution to gross domestic product tumbled to between 4 percent and 5 percent, according to estimates from Funcas think-tank analyst Maria Jesus Fernandez, from a 12 percent share in 2019.

(Reporting by Clara-Laeila Laudette; Writing by Nathan Allen, Editing by Andrei Khalip and Bill Berkrot)

This article was from Reuters and was legally licensed through the Industry Dive publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.

Photo Credit: Spain's tourism fell 80 percent to just 19 million visitors in 2020, a level not seen since 1969. (Barcelona pictured) Pixabay