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Travel updates: Backlash as Scots blocked from visiting Spain this summer

Travel industry bosses are hitting back over Nicola Sturgeon’s decision to leave Spain off Scotland’s list of approved travel corridors.

The First Minister said a requirement to quarantine for 14 days for any travellers arriving from the country would remain in force north of the border, even though it is being lifted in England from Friday.

Flights to Spain account for 60 per cent of leisure flights from Aberdeen, Glasgow and Southampton airports, according to Derek Provan, chief executive of AGS Airports, which owns all three; describing Spain’s absence from the list as a “glaring omission.”

“It’s important we work quickly to bring the travel advice issued in line with the rest of the UK,” he said. “We’ve requested a meeting with the Scottish Government to discuss what further measures could be put in place that would allow the lifting of restrictions and prevent airlines from cancelling routes to what is one of Scotland’s most popular and important tourism destinations.”  

Rory Boland, Editor of Which? Travel said: “Retaining quarantine restrictions on Spain could lead to Scottish holidaymakers being left out of pocket. Those who have already booked package holidays from an English airport may not be able to claim a refund because the holiday will now go ahead.” He advised: “It’s important that those affected get an opportunity to rebook at a later date and don’t have to pay the price for England and Scotland having different quarantine lists.” 

The SNP leader, who had come under intense pressure over recent days to unveil her plan for overseas travel, cited an infection prevalence rate of 330 per 100,000 people in Spain, compared to 28 per 100,000 in Scotland. Yesterday, she lifted quarantine requirements for 57 countries, only two less than the UK’s list of 59; Spain and Serbia being the only exceptions.

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