10-day quarantine for travelers from seven southern African countries

Catalonia set to announce new date for Covid certificate requirement in establishments on Monday

Image of the control tower at Barcelona airport (by Àlex Recolons)
Image of the control tower at Barcelona airport (by Àlex Recolons) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

November 29, 2021 11:07 AM

Travelers from South Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, and Swaziland will have to quarantine for 10 days due to the Omicron Covid-19 variant, as was announced by the Spanish government on Monday.  

The ruling published in Spain’s official gazette will be in force for at least 14 days.

Visitors from these southern African countries are allowed to stop quarantining if they test negative on the seventh day. 

Exceptions apply to transit passengers that reside or have a residence European Union permit and to aeronautical personnel. 

Spain will suspend all flights to and from South Africa and Botswana from Tuesday due to the ‘Omicron’ variant.

There are no direct flights between Barcelona and the southern African nations, but there are some flights via connections. 

The European Commission has also proposed that all European Union member states cancel air connections to and from the southern African countries


New Covid-19 variant "concerns" public health authorities

Public health secretary Carmen Cabezas, said on Saturday that Catalan authorities were "concerned" about the Omicron variant, but also recalled how other strains had worried them in the beginning, but turned out to not have "had such an impact."

Catalan health minister Josep Maria Argimon said that the new Covid-19 variant is likely to be detected in Catalonia in the "coming days."

In an interview with the public Catalan radio station, Argimon said that closing borders would only "delay" the arrival of the new variant.


Covid certificate mandate in Catalonia

The requirement to show a Covid certificate in bars, restaurants, gyms and elderly care homes, in place from last Friday, was suspended until further notice, just a few hours after it came into force.

Catalan authorities are expected to announce on Monday afternoon the new date from which the measure will be enforced after postponing the regulation due to technical problems downloading the passes from the La Meva Salut website.

Since Monday 22, 1,816,361 Covid certificates have been downloaded from the public health website, according to Argimon. Only 348,894 during Sunday. In total, 10,421,142 passports have been generated in Catalonia.