Face masks no longer compulsory outdoors in Catalonia after 13 months
Protection remains compulsory in public indoor spaces, public transport and open-air concerts when standing
The obligation to wear masks outdoors was lifted this Saturday, June 26, at midnight, as long as a 1.5-meter safety distance is enforced – in case of crowds, everyone will have to wear them again, so it is highly recommended to bring them with oneself at all times in case it is needed in some situation. Yet, distancing will not be needed for those who are living together.
The protection has been mandatory for 13 months, and will remain as a requirement in public indoor spaces, public transport and open-air concerts when standing. When seated, it will not be necessary as long as the safety distancing is guaranteed.
These measures were approved by the Spanish cabinet in an extraordinary meeting on Thursday, and also include an obligation to use face masks in private transport of up to nine people when not traveling with one's bubble.
Care home users, but not workers, will not be obliged to use them anymore as long as over 80% of the people living in the center are already vaccinated. Firefighters and other employees spending very long shifts together will also be able to not wear the protection as long as 80% of those working in the site are already inoculated.
"Face masks will give way to smiles," said Spain's health minister, Carolina Darias, to the press after the cabinet's decision.
Face masks compulsory since May 2020
Face masks first became obligatory for all commuters on public transport in Catalonia and the rest of Spain on May 4, 2020. Two weeks later, the Spanish government made them compulsory both indoors and outdoors, "if it is not possible to guarantee a minimum safety distance of two meters." When the first state of alarm was lifted the following month, masks remained a requirement.
The measure has been applying to adults and children over the age of six in both outdoor and indoor public spaces.