Spain holidays: Flight prices could soar as airlines forced to pay for COVID-19 tests

Spain holidays were looking promising at one point earlier this year after the nation said it would be opening up its borders to tourists in the summer. But it seems that hope was short-lived after another announcement today from Spain could see airlines put under more strain and airfare prices rocket. Spain’s airport authority AENA is going to pass on the multi-million pound costs of all coronavirus checks and new systems.


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The shock move could not only see airfares rise but see airlines face collapse after an already financially unstable couple of months.

AENA has said that any grants received, such as from the European Union, would be discounted from the bill which could cost millions of euros across the Spanish airport network.

The same formula is reportedly being proposed for ports in Spain.

Airlines that have been hit particularly hard by the coronavirus financially can “pay off” the additional fees over several years.

The new proposals have been officially published today by the Spanish government which is granting the airport authority special permission to recoup the costs of all the checks once the State of Emergency is lifted on June 21.

AENA will be responsible for the new rules which will provide “the human, health and support resources necessary to guarantee the sanitary control of the entry of passengers on international flights.”

The terms will be agreed between the Ministry of Health and AENA in the next few days.

AENA is one of the few companies which has not adjusted its workforce during the current crisis despite the collapse of air activity and the reduction of capacity at airports.

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The company has been given the opportunity to hire new personnel which will open up job opportunities.

The Spanish government said: ”The staff or material expenses, which will depend on intangibles such as the volume of tourists that come to Spain in the coming months or the existence of outbreaks in the pandemic, will be charged to the airport tariffs for this and subsequent years until their recovery.”

Existing agreements said there would be no increase in airport tariffs until 2027.

However, the coronavirus pandemic has been deemed an exceptional circumstance.

During the State of Emergency, most of Spain’s airports have been brought to a halt.

A few weeks ago, 13 of the nation’s airports were reopened.

The airports have seen fewer people but this is likely to change once all airports across the world reopen and international travel restarts.

Currently, there is debate as to whether travellers will have to take coronavirus tests before they leave the country or on arrival.

But like the UK, Spanish airports are looking likely to make visitors take temperatures and get a health questionnaire filled in.

The UK implemented quarantine rules on Monday which are likely to dramatically alter whether people will want to travel into the country.

The new rules state that anyone arriving into the UK has to quarantine themselves for 14 days on arrival and provide the authorities the address for where they will be isolating.

If they are caught not isolating themselves, they could face a fine of £1,000.

Additional reporting by Rita Sobot

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