TRAVELLERS returning from Spain have expressed their frustration and resignation at the short-notice quarantine requirements.
In a decision announced on Saturday – less than five hours before it came into force – Spain was removed from the UK’s list of safe destinations after it saw a spike in the number of coronavirus cases.
Joe Allen, a TV producer from London who visited Madrid and returned on Sunday, said he felt let down by the lack of information to travellers about the “knee-jerk” decision.
Mr Allen said: “We waited for the appropriate time and I specifically waited for the quarantine to have been lifted from Spain, and I absolutely wouldn’t have gone with a quarantine.
The 32-year-old said he had not had any official communication from the government about the quarantine but understood its importance.
He added: “I was expecting perhaps at border control there’d be some big old posters or digital screens – or people with megaphones perhaps saying ‘Don’t forget you need to isolate’.
“What would have been useful is for someone who made it clear in advance – ‘There is a real possibility that you could get stopped from coming home’.
“You can argue that I was naive for not knowing that, but I think it might have been helpful.”
Laura Wood, 41, from Oxfordshire, flew from Gatwick to the Costa Blanca with her family for a two-week holiday, also returning on Sunday, shortly after the measures took effect.
She told PA: “It was a bit of a last-minute disappointment to the end of the holiday but we’re going to get on with it. There has to be a cut-off, I guess, and we were just on the unlucky side of it.”
“It was a different type of holiday than we’ve had, you don’t kind of expect to be walking along the seafront wearing a mask in 30-degree heat,” she added.
Mrs Wood said she had experienced some “smug” responses from people at home and online after the measures were announced.
“I think it works both ways; I don’t think people can complain about the quarantine necessarily because we knew we were taking risks, but I think people’s joy at other people’s misfortune is a bit sad.”
Sophia Fadil, from Brighton, 32, works in retail after being made redundant during lockdown from her job in the travel industry.