Spanish tourism criticizes new face mask rules

 Saturday, April 3, 2021 


After a year of hardship, the Spanish tourism sector is desperately in need of some positive news. But in its place, the new law making face masks mandatory in all public spaces regardless of the distance between people has come as an additional blow. Until now, use of masks was needed if a safe distance of 1.5 meters could not be maintained.

The compulsion to keep mouths and noses covered in public spaces, including the beach and swimming pool, will undoubtedly deter a number of tourists visiting Spain, according to industry experts who opine that businesses were not consulted regarding this.

“We are going through the kind of hell that threatens to wipe out thousands and thousands of jobs and businesses,” said José Luis Zoreda, vice-president of Exceltur, the main lobby group for Spanish tourism. “And now they want to turn the beaches into open-air field hospitals,” he added.

Zoreda said that the sector has already given up any hope of an Easter rebound. “The crucial thing now is to look to the summer, which means instilling high levels of confidence so that foreigners or Spaniards want to visit,” he said.

Zoreda does not believe that these types of measures, which he considers “improvised,” are helpful in building confidence. Zoreda said, “And we want more consistency between the measures, many of which seem contradictory.”

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