Regional president Ángel Víctor Torres announced the “tough measures” late Wednesday and said the island would be close off to all but essential travel from Friday at midnight.
He said that for a period of two weeks, travel between municipalities on the island should be avoided, that social gatherings would be limited to six people from a maximum of two households, and the curfew would be brought forward to 10pm.
But while the decision appeared to derail the plans of thousands of holidaymakers who have booked to travel to the island for some winter sun over Christmas, a clarification came from the island’s Health Ministry explaining that tourists were exempt from the ban.
Those already on the island will be allowed to stay on and return home as planned, while new arrivals, both from mainland Spain or elsewhere, will be welcome if they have proof of accommodation booked and a negative Covid-19 test taken within the previous 72 hours.
A spokesperson from Jet2 which is operating holidays to the island said:
“We are aware of news reports regarding Tenerife closing its borders to holidaymakers. We can assure customers that we have received confirmation from the Canaries Government that this is not the case. Holidaymakers can still travel to Tenerife to enjoy Christmas and their well-deserved holidays in the sunshine.
“Given this welcome update from the Canaries Government, alongside the current FCDO travel advice, we are operating our flights and holidays programmes to Tenerife as normal.”