Traveling to Spain in spring 2022: entry rules explained

Unlike several countries in the European Union and the European Economic Area which have already relaxed their measures, Spain continues to keep all its entry rules in place.

Although the country requires travelers to present valid proof upon entry, the same rules do not apply to everyone.

The Spanish Ministry of Health explains that travelers are divided into two main categories: those traveling from an EU/EEA country and those traveling from a non-EU country.

This means that Spain applies different rules depending on the country a person is traveling from, reports

Traveling to Spain from EU/EEA countries

Currently, all countries in the European Union/European Economic Area are on Spain’s risk list. Nevertheless, the authorities explained that everyone is allowed to enter the country for travel purposes.

Travelers arriving in Spain from any of the EU/EEA countries are exempt from additional entry rules as long as they present one of the certificates that are part of the EU Digital COVID Pass – a certificate of vaccination, recovery or valid test.

“If you come from a country at risk for COVID-19, you must present a certificate or document proving vaccination, a diagnostic test for active infection or recovery from COVID-19”, says the Ministry of Health.

This means that vaccinated travelers from the EU can enter without restriction as long as they hold a valid vaccination certificate. A vaccination certificate issued by EU authorities is accepted upon entry into Spain as long as it proves that the holder has completed the primary vaccination within the last nine months or has received an additional dose of vaccine.

Additionally, the statement above indicates that unvaccinated travelers from the EU may also enter Spain for travel purposes. All they have to do is present a recently passed recovery or negative test upon entry.

For a recovery certificate to be accepted by the Spanish authorities, the document must show that the holder has recovered from the virus within the last six months.

Regarding negative tests, Spain accepts both PCR tests and rapid antigen tests. The PCR test must be carried out 72 hours before arrival in Spain and the rapid antigen test must be carried out within 24 hours before arrival.

In addition to the above, all persons, including those who have been vaccinated, must complete the health screening form.

Traveling to Spain from safe countries outside the EU

Several non-EU countries are placed on Spain’s safe list. This list includes China (including Hong Kong and Macao), Colombia, Indonesia, Kuwait, Peru, Qatar, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Taiwan.

Travelers from these areas can enter Spain without having to follow any additional rules provided they present a vaccination or recovery certificate and complete the health control form.

The list of safe third countries is updated weekly, which means that this categorization will not always remain the same.

Traveling to Spain from other non-EU countries

At present, all other third countries not mentioned in the safe list are part of Spain’s risk list.

Spanish authorities stress that only specific groups of third-country travelers from risk areas who have been vaccinated or recovered from the virus can enter the country for travel purposes provided they hold a valid certificate.

Third-country travelers arriving in Spain from a risk area can only enter if they belong to one of the following categories:

  • Hold a long-term visa issued by a Schengen Member State or a Schengen Associated State
  • These are health professionals, transport personnel, seafarers and aeronautical personnel
  • They are diplomats, consular, serve in military or civil defense, or perform humanitarian functions
  • They are students or highly skilled workers

Unvaccinated and unrecovered third-country travelers arriving in Spain for absolutely essential purposes are also permitted entry provided they follow additional entry measures.

Current national COVID-19 restrictions in Spain

Unlike the majority of EU/EEA countries, Spain continues to maintain national restrictions related to COVID-19. Everyone over the age of six is ​​required to wear a face mask when attending various indoor venues and events. Wearing a mask is also compulsory on public transport.

As for the other rules, they vary from region to region. Some locations may require you to present a valid EU Digital COVID Pass or other equivalent document.