UPDATED 01/07 TO COVER NEW RULES:
Gran Canaria travel requirements
Everyone entering Spain from another country, including international transits, must complete the Health Control Form and obtain their QR to present at boarding and health controls on arrival in Spain. This is required for all children of all ages as well as adults.
There are currently two sets of rules about travel to the Canary Islands from outside Spain.
1. The first is Spain's rules which are enforced at airports, ports and land borders. There are available in full here... https://www.spth.gob.es/info-pcr
In summary, all passengers* over the age of 12 from a country/ area that has a SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus risk, must present ONE of the following...
- A certificate or document (paper or electronic format) certifying vaccination against COVID-19. Your last jab must be 14 days of more before your travel date.
- A negative certificate of a Diagnostic Test of Active Infection. This can be a PCR, TMA, LAMP or Antigen test (check just before you book your test as this may change again). The test must be done within the 48 hours before arrival in Spain. It can be a PCR or antigen test.
- A certificate of Covid recovery issued by a doctor or health authority.
*The UK was on a short list of non-EU countries exempted from needing a test of vaccine certificate. However, from Friday July 2nd, they will have to follow the same rules as other Europeans.
People arriving from a low risk area do not need to have a test or show their vaccination certificate to travel to Spain. However, they must still confoirm to the check in rules detailed below.
2. The second set of rules are the Canary Island rules which are enforced at check in to all touristic accommodation (hotels, apartments, holiday lets, campsites, etc). The apply to all international arrivals, including British citizens.
The Canary Islands rules are here... https://www.hellocanaryislands.com/travelling-to-the.../
In summary, the Canary Islands rules state that visitors from abroad (over the age of 12) must provide ONE of the following at check-in...
- A negative test for active COVID-19 infection in the 72 hours prior to arrival in the Canary Islands. The tests that are allowed are PCR (RT-PCR for COVID-19), Transcription Mediated Amplification (TMA), and Antigen tests. The test must be done in the 72 hours before arriving in the Canary Islands. In exceptional cases it can be done after arrival and before check in.
- An official document stating that they have been fully vaccinated within the 8 months prior to their trip or have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) within the past 4 months and at least 15 days prior to the trip.
- An official medical certificate or public document stating that they have recovered from Covid-19 within the past 6 months.
The Canary Islands have their own website with more Corona information here. It is updated and the most reliable source of information: https://www.hellocanaryislands.com/coronavirus/ .
Gran Canaria Covid rules
The mask rules in Gran Canaria are simple and almost everyone follows them in public. Mask use outdoors is obligatory in all circumstances where it is impossible to maintain a 1.5 metres safety distance from other people. This includes very busy streets and crowded outdoor events.
Mask use is still required in all public indoor areas (except when seated at bars, restaurants, etc. So, you don't need to wear a mask to sit at an indoor cafe but you do have to wear it to go to the toilet.
Smoking is not currently permitted in any public areas where you can't stay more than two metres from others. As such it is not allowed in outdoor bar or terrace areas and you can't walk and smoke on the street. You have to find an isolated spot and smoke there.
Gran Canaria curfews and opening hours
There is no curfew in Gran Canaria and it is unlikely to return. Bars can open until late under the current Level One rules but could close earlier if the island move up to Level Two due to a rise in Covid cases this summer.
Gran Canaria mask exemptions
If you are exempt from using a mask on medical grounds you will need a signed doctor's letter or certificate as the police are asking for them and most shops wont let people in without them. These letters must be signed and theoretically need to be translated into Spanish by an official translator. Spain does not recognise lanyard or other voluntary systems.
What hotels and restaurants are open in Gran Canaria?
A lot of hotels and apartment complexes in Gran Canaria closed during 2020 but many are now reopening.
Renting a car in Gran Canaria
Long experience has taught us that the cheapest car rental deals are rarely value for money and often just a cover for bare-faced scams. Many of our group members have reported that cheap car hire companies use bogus charges for damage, excess fuel charges, extra insurance demands and all sorts of other imaginative ways of getting money out of their clients.
Our members consistently advise each other to avoid GoldCar, EuropCar and Inter Rent. Be aware that if you use a cheap car rental website, you often don't know who you are signing up with until it is too late.
Our advice is to use reputable local companies. The cheapest deals are often with Autoreisen and Plus Cars while Cicar is also a good option if slightly more expensive. The best value option is often to use a specialist car rental broker who provides a quality car, personal service and enhanced insurance cover as standard. We recommend this service.
Gran Canaria airport transfers
Companies like Hoppa that offer the cheapest possible Gran Canaria transfer service are often unreliable because they automatically pass ylour transfer on to a local company. However, they also take a big commission so the local operatorsd don't liuke working with them. If there is a double booking or a shortage of cars, you are likely to get picked up late of left in the lurch.
To avoid this, it's myuch better to book with a local operator who who can talk to directly if you need to make a change or if something goes wrong. We recommend this local service because they are good value, reliable and can communicate in several languages.
Booking Excursions in Gran Canaria
A lot of Gran Canaria excursions have gone into hibernation or cut back their timetables significantly. It is therefore important to use a reliable excursion booking service and to book in plenty of time to allow for changes to schedules. We'd advise against using unlicensed street excursion vendors because of the current uncertainty. If a trip is cancelled it can be hard to get your money back.
Our online excursion booking service allows you to book in advance with a secure payments system and is provided by a quality excursion booking company with excellent personal service and full cancellation refunds.
Public transport in Gran Canaria
All public transport is running in Gran Canaria although there are less taxis on the road than during normal times. Taxis accept both card and cash payments.
You can pay for bus journeys on board the bus using a debit card (but not with cash) or get a travel card from a bus station for significant savings. The yellow buses in Las Palmas don't accept card payments or cash so you need to get a travel card from the bus station.