Spain Announces Plans to Start Welcoming American Tourists Again This Summer

The nation plans to use the EU's vaccine passport program for international travelers.

Ronda, Spain cliff
Ronda, Spain | Shutterstock
Ronda, Spain | Shutterstock
Editor’s Note: We know COVID-19 is continuing to impact your travel plans. As of April 2021, official guidance from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention states that fully vaccinated people can travel at low risk, though safety precautions are still required. Should you need to travel, be sure to familiarize yourself with the CDC’s latest guidance as well as local requirements/protocols/restrictions for both your destination and home city upon your return. Be safe out there.

Following news that the European Union is working on a plan to welcome back tourists sometime in the near future, Spain stepped out and said that with or without the EU, it'll begin allowing international guests to visit come June.

"Spain will be ready in June to tell all travelers worldwide that you can visit us with certainty," said Fernando Valdes Verelst, Spain's Secretary of State of Tourism, during a panel discussion in Mexico this week.

The EU is working on its own version of a vaccine passport, called the Digital Green Certificate, that will make it easier for EU residents to travel between other countries in the union by showing whether a person has been vaccinated, received a negative COVID-19 test result, or recently recovered from the virus.

Spain will reportedly be piloting the EU's health certificate program in each of its airports in May with a goal to formally implement it in June, not only for EU residents but for everyone.

Prior to this announcement, Spain—and most of Europe—was very hesitant about letting US travelers in its borders, banning people from visiting for leisure purposes. As more Americans have opted to get vaccinated, places are starting to view the US as less of a risk and growing eager to accept Americans' tourism dollars once again.

Currently, several countries have announced plans to open their borders, including prime vacation destinations like Greece, Croatia, and the UK's Virgin Islands. For now, though, no matter where you vacation, you will need to produce a negative COVID-19 test result before boarding a flight back to the US.

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Kyler Alvord is a news writer at Thrillist. Find him on Twitter and Instagram. Or don't. It's really up to you.