British tourists have reacted furiously after discovering they will need to prove they can spend £85 a day to enter Spain – after the UK left the European Union.
Proof of sufficient cash is not the only new requirement, with Spain saying British entrants may have to produce a range of documents upon entering the country under new rules brought in as a result of Brexit.
As well as requesting proof tourists can spend at least €100 per day – and a minimum of €900 (£766.94) is available – Spanish border agents can also ask tourists to prove they booked tickets and accommodation in advance for their stay.
Spanish guidelines say that funds can be in the form of foreign currency, travelers’ checks, cash, money orders or credit cards. If tourists are unable to prove that they can support themselves financially, they may be denied entry.
The rule, which has surprised some Brits, came into force earlier this year. As the UK is outside the European Union due to Brexit, the UK is now classified as a ‘third country’, which means more checks are carried out.
British tourists have reacted furiously after discovering they will need to prove they can spend £85 a day to enter Spain – after the UK left the European Union. Photo: Tourists arrive in Barcelona, Spain in July
Tourists who smoke on Barcelona’s beaches will now have to pay fines
By Natalia Penza for MailOnline
Tourists found smoking on any of Barcelona’s 10 beaches now face fines under new rules.
The Catalan capital has become the first major city in Spain to ban smoking on all its beaches.
The move is the culmination of a strategy that began last year with a pilot scheme to ban smoking on four beaches – Sant Miquel, Somorrostro, Nova Icaria and Nova Marbella.
Sunbathers who breach the new restrictions have been warned they will be fined 30 euros (£25), although council chiefs said they did not expect people to be allowed to light up.
The ten beaches affected by the new rule cover just three miles of coastline.
Ecological Transition Councilor Eloi Badia said: ‘No one was fined last year.
‘Everyone understood the situation well and only the odd absent-minded smoker was asked to go on the promenade.’
Barcelona council chiefs said they extended the ban for health reasons and to appease most beach users and pointed to scientific evidence that it takes about a decade for cigarette butts to disappear.
The Spanish government has proposed measures to extend the current ban on smoking in public places to include terraces and beaches.
But an ambitious new anti-smoking law is in the works, which is expected to include a ban on lights in private cars, not expected to be fully drafted until 2023.
The country’s health ministry also wants to increase tobacco prices by imposing additional taxes.
The number of non-smoking beaches in Spain has increased from around 15 in the summer of 2014 to 550 currently.
They include 13 beaches in the Malaga province of the Costa del Sol and seven beaches in Majorca.
Smoking is also banned on about 25 percent of the Costa Blanca’s beaches, although many fines are not handed out to those who light up.
Exceptions include Finestrat Cove, an urban cove of fine sand about two miles from Benidorm, where fines for smoking and vaping can reach 750 euros (£636).
Many people took to social media to react to the rules, criticizing Spain for imposing financial restrictions on holidaymakers there.
One person on Facebook wrote: ‘Spain seems to be becoming too difficult and too elite for many families. Bit of a kick in the teeth to everyone who has been going for years. Families and pensioners will be the most affected.’
Another person wrote: ‘If people choose other countries now let’s see where they bring their tourism.. Good luck Spain!’
Another wrote: ‘Clearly what the Spanish are trying to do, ban people who don’t have a lot of money to come on holiday.
‘If people are on all-inclusive holidays they are not spending money in the local area, so they are not helping the local economy.’
One Twitter user quipped: ‘If I could spend £85 a day I’d go anywhere better than Spain.’
Others directed their anger towards Brexit. One wrote sarcastically: ‘Brexit really is the gift that keeps on giving.’ Another rhetorically asked: ‘More benefits of Brexit?’
‘I remember when Brexiteers told us that nothing would change if we left the EU. What a joke,’ said one outraged Twitter user.
But another Twitter user accused Spain of being an ‘anti-Brexit EU country’ and urged his followers to avoid traveling to the European country together. ‘Great. Don’t go to Spain. These anti-Brexit EU countries are pushing us around,’ he said.
Someone else pointed out on Twitter that Brits are now considered ‘third country’ travelers in all 27 EU states since leaving the Union.
The new rules appear to have come as a surprise to many frequent flyers as not all British entrants to Spain are screened. As all persons entering Spain must meet the requirements, border guards are not required to check all arrivals.
The UK Foreign Office outlined the rules in a statement.
‘At Spanish border control, you may need to show a return or onward ticket; Show that you have enough money for your stay; Show proof of accommodation for your stay, for example, hotel booking confirmation, proof of address when visiting your own property (such as a second home), or an invitation from your host or proof of their address if staying with a third party, friends or acquaintances. Family,’ says its directive.
‘The Spanish government has clarified that the ‘carta de invitation’ is one of the options available to prove that you are living with friends or family,’ it adds.
The Spanish Ministry del Interior said: ‘Foreigners from third countries must prove, if necessary to do so by the authorities controlling the entry of people into Spanish territory, that they have the financial resources to enter the country through cash, traveler’s cheques. Payment slips, or credit cards, that must prove sufficient funds are available on them.’
As well as requesting proof that tourists can spend at least €100 per day – and a minimum of €900 (£766.94) – Spanish border agents can ask tourists to prove they booked tickets and accommodation in advance for their stay. Photo: View of Amadores beach on a hot summer day on the island of Gran Canaria, Spain, July 17, 2022
The rules are outlined on the Spanish Ministry’s website.
‘Currently, the minimum amount to be credited is 100 euros per person per day, with a minimum of 900 euros or its legal equivalent in foreign currency (effective January 1, 2022),’ the website says.
The logic behind this, it says, is that arrivals must ‘represent 10% of the minimum gross interprofessional salary in euros or its legal equivalent in foreign currency multiplied by the number of days they intend to stay in Spain. Number of people traveling at your expense.’
It adds: ‘In controlling the entry of people into Spanish territory, it is proven that a foreigner lacks sufficient financial resources to stay in Spain and continue traveling to the country of destination. or return to the country of origin, or do not have nominative, non-transferable and closed tickets or tickets, in the means of transport they intend to use, their entry into Spanish territory shall be refused as established by law.’
After leaving the European Union, British citizens will also have to stamp their passports at border gates on entry and exit.
The rule, which has surprised some Brits, came into force earlier this year. As the UK is outside the European Union due to Brexit, the UK is now classified as a ‘third country’, which means more checks are carried out. Photo: Tourists in Gran Canaria
UK Foreign Office guidelines state: ‘Border guards will use passport stamps to check that you are complying with the 90-day visa-free limit for short stays in the Schengen area. If the relevant entry or exit stamps are not in your passport, border guards will assume you have overstayed your visa-free border.’
The same €100 per day requirement also applies to people applying for a Schengen visa from Spain. The daily requirements for Schengen visa applicants vary between each EU and Schengen country.
In Belgium, for example, Schengen visa applicants must prove they have a €95 pet allowance if staying in a hotel and at least €45 if staying in cheap accommodation.
In France, the minimum daily amount is €120 if the arriving tourist does not have proof of pre-paid accommodation. If accommodation is prepaid, that amount drops to €65 per day.