Mallorca “on the edge of the abyss”: Corona numbers are increasing sharply
The number of infections is exploding in Mallorca. The delta variant is spreading. Vacationers wonder what will become of their trips.
- The delta variant is spreading strongly in Mallorca
- The corona numbers are rising sharply on the popular island – as in the rest of Spain
- The situation threatens to escalate
- Is the Mallorca vacation in danger now? Foreign Minister Heiko Maas gives hope to Spain vacationers despite the current situation
Francina Armengol is furious: “If someone is planning to come to Mallorca to behave badly, they should better stay at home.” The island’s head of government is angry with those young tourists who contributed to this with their excesses of party in June that Mallorca is currently experiencing a violent corona relapse. A crash that was fueled by uncontrolled fiestas and the Delta variant. And which could endanger the tourist summer season on the popular holiday island. Does the holiday in Mallorca fall into the water?
Mallorca vacation in danger?
This scenario is a nightmare for Hundreds of thousands of European vacationerswho actually want to spend their holidays in Mallorca in July or August. The situation was stable for months and the number of new infections was extremely low.
But just now, at the beginning of the high season, the number of infections is exploding. “A catastrophe,” says the hotel industry, which is trembling that Corona could ruin the second summer in a row. The economic consequences for tourism could be “dramatic”, warns Simón Pedro Barceló, head of the Mallorcan hotel group Barceló.
Mallorca: Delta variant is spreading
“The number of cases is rising staggeringly”, headlines the newspaper “Diario de Mallorca”. According to the latest available data, the weekly incidence on the Balearic island has more than quadrupled within a short period of time. Last was the official one Seven-day incidence at 82, for the entire Balearic archipelago at 94 – with a strong upward trend. From the limit of 50, for example, Germany, Mallorca’s most important travel market, can declare a region a risk area. In Germany itself, the comparative value is currently below five.
Also interesting: That’s how it is in the Corona quarantine hotel on Mallorca
According to Javier Arranz, Corona spokesman for the island government, the highly contagious Delta variant is already responsible for at least 28 percent of all infections on Mallorca – this value is also rising rapidly. In other Spanish holiday areas, such as Catalonia, the delta share is now estimated at 50 percent.
That is why there is growing fear that the situation in Spain, the most popular holiday destination for Germans, could get out of hand again: the dream island of Mallorca and other Spanish holiday areas will soon also be recognized by the German Robert Koch Institute (RKI) Virus Variant Area classified? How did this happen before with Portugal, where Delta is already the predominant virus type?
Portugal returnees therefore have to be in compulsory quarantine in Germany – even if they are vaccinated and have a negative test. Tens of thousands of vacationers canceled their holidays in Portugal as a result. “A big blow” for the Portuguese travel industry, says Joao Fernandes from the tourist office on the Algarve holiday coast. Read here: New hope for Portugal vacationers.
Alltours boss: Mallorca is “on the edge of the abyss”
“If that also happens to Mallorca, then the 2021 summer season is over and we have to close the hotels,” says Willi Verhuven, head of the tour operator Alltours. Verhuven sees the island again “on the edge of the abyss”. He demands Ban on drinking tourism, strict controls and severe penalties. Mallorca’s curfew, which currently only starts at 2 a.m., should, in Verhuven’s opinion, be brought forward to 11 p.m.
Similar to Mallorca, Portugal advertised with very low infection rates in the spring and was looking forward to a new start in tourism. This dream has burst: The two most-visited holiday strongholds, Lisbon and the Algarve, became high-risk areas again overnight: The Algarve now has a 7-day incidence of 284 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, the value for Lisbon is 269 there again a night curfew.
The situation in Mallorca threatens to escalate
It cannot be ruled out that the situation in Mallorca will escalate in a similar way. Thousands of Spanish students came to Mallorca’s Playa de Palma in June to celebrate their graduation. At least 1,800 of them then traveled home with a corona infection. A youth group from Luxembourg who was on Mallorca also became infected. A disaster for the image of the Mediterranean paradise, which advertises to be a “safe holiday destination”.
Mallorca is not the only corona hotspot in Spain. In the northern Spanish holiday region Catalonia It looks even worse with the Costa Brava and the Mediterranean metropolis of Barcelona. There the seven-day incidence jumped to 233 cases per 100,000 inhabitants – for this reason, Catalonia has just been declared a risk area again by Germany; Andalusia in southern Spain with the Costa del Sol holiday coast has been a risk area for a long time, according to the RKI. On the Canary Island Tenerife the incidence value is already 132, in the neighboring beach paradise Fuerteventura 98. The nationwide incidence in Spain is now over 100.
All of Spain reports worrying corona numbers
Around 12,000 new cases of infection are currently reported across Spain every day. Worrying numbers to the high rates of infection remember previous virus waves. For Spain, by the way, it is already the fifth corona wave that is now rolling over the kingdom. The country has always been one of the European hotspots in the past.
Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas does not currently consider the corona situation in Spain to be worrying despite the increasing number of infections. “There are no indications of developments that would lead us to fear that we would have to make decisions again in the foreseeable future that would mean that German tourists would no longer be able to vacation in Spain,” said Maas on Monday during a visit to the capital, Madrid. There is still reason for caution. But he currently does not assume that a reintroduction of the quarantine obligation for returning Spain vacationers is imminent.
The only consolation in Spain is that most cases of infection are much easier than before. Undoubtedly a success of the corona vaccinations, which is also making good progress in Spain. Almost 40 percent of the population now has complete vaccination protection. Nevertheless, there are still 2,400 Covid patients in the hospital, around 600 of them in the intensive care unit. The number of admissions to the hospital is now also increasing again.
This development shows that Corona is far from under control, warns Spain’s umbrella association for virologists. The euphoria of the Spanish government, which has already announced the victory over the epidemic and therefore recently the Mask compulsory outdoors eliminated, was probably a bit premature.