Boris Johnson is to scrap an air bridge agreement with Spain and reimpose quarantine measures on tourists re-entering Britain from the European country.
It comes after the Spanish health minister reported 971 new infections of coronavirus on Thursday – the biggest daily spike since the lockdown in the country was eased.
The change in policy from the government will mean any tourist returning to the UK from Spain will be requested to self-isolate for a 14-day period, or risk being fined by the authorities.
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A formal announcement of the change in policy is expected to made by the Department for Transport (DfT) on Saturday evening and it is expected quarantine measures will come back into force on Sunday.
Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that the Scottish government would reimpose the quarantine restrictions.
“This reinforces the point that these matters are subject to change at short notice & so my advice is to be cautious about non-essential foreign travel,” she tweeted.
The move will throw travellers’ plans into chaos, after ministers gave the green light to British tourists wanting to holiday in Spain earlier this month.
The country appeared on a list published earlier in July of 59 countries and territories tourists could travel to without quarantine restrictions.
But in recent days fears of a second spike in Covid-19 infections in Spain have escalated as Catalonia became the latest region to crack down on nightlife.
The wealthy northeast region – home to Barcelona – ordered all nightclubs to close for 15 days and put a midnight curfew on bars in the greater Barcelona area and other towns around Lleida that have become contagion hot zones.
The Foreign Office advice for Spain previously stated that Public Health England has been monitoring reports of “substantial increases in Covid-19 in the regions of Aragon and Catalonia”.
Spain is just one of dozens of countries that have reported rising infections.
Coronavirus is now rising in every region of the globe, figures show.