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After a 32 month break, American Airlines finally restores seasonal flights to Barcelona for summer 2022. Since June 3, US citizens can fly nonstop between Chicago and Spain’s top tourist destination as the US carrier opens yet another route for vacationers heading to Europe.
A metropolitan city extremely rich in history and ideal for tourism, Barcelona is located on the eastern coast of Spain, being the gateway to the autonomous region of Catalonia. Although Madrid is the first city in Spain, Barcelona is home to some of its most iconic landmarksincluding La Sagrada Familia and several Gaudi monuments.
Travel demand is back now that most Covid rules are scrapped
Tourism in Europe may have come to a standstill throughout the Covid crisis, but now that the continent is reopening its borders and removing most entry requirements, travel demand increases dramatically. Like other European countries, Spain has recently relaxed its travel rules.
After the Mediterranean hotspot signaled it was moving away from its once strict Covid policies, American Airlines was quick to relaunch service between two of the busiest airports in the US and Spain. This means non-stop flights to Barcelona are officially back to Chicago O’Hare International (ORD)Just in time for summer.
The last time American offered service on this route was in October 2019, before Covid was declared a pandemic in early 2020. While the virus was still unchecked and more disruptive variants continued increase, the route remained unavailable. For two consecutive summers, Chicago-based American Airlines customers have been unable to reach Barcelona directly.
This is no longer the case.
American Airlines ends two-year hiatus as Barcelona route relaunches
The break ended last Friday (3) when American resumed operations on its Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners, carrying 234 passengers. As with pre-pandemic summers, the Chicago-Barcelona flights will continue until October 29, 2022when the summer/autumn tourist season ends in Spain and Europe to some extent.
Flight AA40 leaves Chicago (ORD) at 5:35 p.m. and arrives in Barcelona (BCN) the following day at 9:00 a.m., on a daily frequency. Back in America, flight AA41 leaves BCN at 11:35 a.m., landing at ORD at 2:35 p.m. local time, also daily. Depending on the date and seating selection, One-way economy class tickets may vary between $823.59 and $2,819.25.
Besides Chicago, American also offers flights to Barcelona from 3 other US hubs, including Miami (MIA), New York (JFK) and Philadelphia (PHL). In addition to this, the carrier operates on five other routes to Madrid, the Spanish capital: these flights depart from Charlotte (CLT), Dallas (DFW), MIA, JFK and PHL. The frequency is daily in all of them.
Can Americans visit Spain without restriction?
All Americans are eligible to visit Spain, but with different requirements depending on the vaccination.
Fully immunized people are no longer subject to pre-departure testing when boarding a flight to Spain, but those who are not vaccinated remain subject to presentation of either a negative PCR test result issued less than 72 hours before arrival, or a negative Rapid Antigen (24 hours).
Regardless of vaccination, US citizens do not have to enter mandatory quarantine or undergo further testing upon arrival in Spain. In addition, Spanish authorities no longer require proof of vaccination to enter confined spacessuch as restaurants, traveling on public transport or visiting cultural places.
Once inside, all are welcome to explore the main nation of the Iberian Peninsula hassle free.
While it has relaxed its strict Covid-era entry protocols, now allowing the unvaccinated to re-enter by presenting negative tests, Spain has refused to drop the mask rule on public transport , including airplanes. This means the use of the mask is always necessary when riding on city buses, intercity trains and when traveling in Spain.
What are some of the main attractions in Barcelona?
Barcelona is a open-air museum and one of the oldest cities in Europe. A complex labyrinth of narrow streets full of color and countless historical monuments. Housing the awesome Sagrada Familiawhich will soon be finished after 144 years, the 13th century Barcelona Cathedraland the picturesque Latin Quarterthere are enough sights to keep tourists busy for days.
Close to Barcelona, popular day trips include tours of the Costa Bravawhere there are charming seaside towns along the Catalan Mediterranean coast, the medieval cities of Girona and Lleidaand even the tiny Catalan-speaking nation of Andorrawhich borders Spain and France.
Fortunately, all these wonders are only 8 hours flight from the USA with American Airlines.
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Disclaimer: Current Travel Rules and Restrictions may change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm entry of your nationality and/or any changes to travel conditions before travelling. Travel Off Path does not approve travel against government advice