Which jobs are considered essential under Spain's lockdown restrictions?

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Which jobs are considered essential under Spain's lockdown restrictions?
Photos: AFP

In further lockdown measures announced by the Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez from Monday March 30th only those workers considered “essential” are allowed to leave the house to go to their work place.


The list of professions exempt from the lockdown was published in Spain’s official state bulletin late Sunday night after being approved in an emergency cabinet meeting.

All other people are only permitted to leave their homes under the following reasons: to purchase food or medicine, to visit sick or vulnerable dependents, to go to the hospital or to walk the dog.

These measures are now in place until at least April 12th but may in fact be extended further if deemed necessary.

So, until at least Easter everyone in Spain is on lockdown unless they have very good reason to leave the house.

The restrictions do not apply to those who are considered to carry out essential work which includes those employed in the sectors of healthcare (including veterinarians and opticians), food (including pet food) and medicine, the media, fuel and energy, tobacconists, IT and telecom services.


Those employed in sector that care for the elderly and vulnerable will be allowed to carry out their work.

People who are employed in research and development or biotechnology industry that are working towards solutions for the coronavirus crisis are also allowed to continue their work.

People working in mortuary services including funeral directors are exempt.

Those involved in the care of animals are allowed to continue their work.

Motor mechanics will be allowed to work to provide repairs for freight vehicles and the emergency services.

And those who work in financial services, including banks, insurance companies and investment funds will be allowed to continue to provide essential services.  

The exemption also includes those working in restaurants that provide home delivery services and those hotels that are required to remain open to provide emergency accommodation.

Those employed with companies that are involved in the production or supply chain of medical, sanitary or cleaning equipment are also considered exempt from the restrictions.

Those working in public transport or freight or the maintenance services behind them will be allowed to go to work.

So too will those working in prisons as well as those working in emergency services and private security companies.

Those working in the media, as well as the printing and distribution of the press, and including those who sell newspapers from kiosks are exempt from the restrictions.

Will the banks be open? 

Banks will continue to function in order to provide essential services and some of the branches will remain open, however only those with appointments will be allowed into the branch. Cash points remain functional and other transactions and services are encouraged online where possible.

What about the post office?

Post office workers fall into the essential category and postal services have been guaranteed throughout the state of alarm. That said, post offices themselves are operating limited opening hours (between 9.30 and 12.30) and only for essential services.   


All other work outside of these essential jobs must be carried out from home where possible.

Those who cannot work from home will still be paid and will be expected to make up the work hours at a later date.

Employers must continue to pay workers’ salaries in full for the next two weeks with the condition that employees will  make up the hours before December 31st, insisted  Spanish Labour Minister Yolanda Díaz after the cabinet meeting.

 ‘We are talking about a period of eight working days,’ pointing out that both Maundy Thursday (April 9th) and Good Friday (April 10th) are public holidays in most of the regions of Spain.


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