Restrictions on Travel

We had a comment from a reader called John concerning being able to travel across Spain to reach a ferry port under the present conditions.

We phoned the British Consulate in Málaga – which requires a great deal of patience as it entails listening to minutes of “press number 1 if you…” We finally got through to a human after listening to an eternity of ‘music whilst you hold,” seemingly composed to incite suicide.

The advice was visit their webpage… which we did and here is what we gleaned:

“Transport services will be operating at reduced levels. Public gatherings are banned, most shops other than those selling food or other essential items such as pharmacies will be closed, many businesses and all schools and universities are closed, and all citizens have been instructed to remain at home except when going about a limited set of activities in particular to buy food or other essential items, to return home to their primary residence, to go to hospital or other health centres, to go to work (if unable to work from home), to carry out caring or similar duties or in case of real need.”

Great stuff! (where are the eye-rolling emojis when you need one).

They did, however, have an email alert which you can sign up to, for those of you who are interested.

The lady who took the call, who no doubt has to put up with any number of idiots such as myself, did offer, “the borders are not closed.” Again wonderful news, but the problem is reaching them.

So, next call was to the 060 (Traffic Department), which thankfully offered no ‘music-to-slash-your-wrists-by’ but merely said, all our operators are busy; ring back in a couple of minutes time. And we did, and did and did. The closest we got to actually speaking with somebody was ‘not a sausage,” even after having to endure several ‘death loops’ of “un momento, por favor” repeated by an electronic voice that made even Steven Hawkin’s sound melodic.

Conclusions: The borders are open, public transport is running at a reduce rate and roads are open (unless closed thanks to the present cold front crossing Spain). It quite clearly says, “returning to their primary residence,” which would be the purpose of John’s epic journey across Guardia Civil territory.

Our advice: Go for it, John, as the worse that can happen is that you’d be turned back but only up to half-way point – sending you back after that would be illogical. You could be fined? Very, very doubtful as they are still not fining people even for spontaneous tango marathons in supermarket parking lots.

(News/Editorials: Spain)

  4 comments for “Restrictions on Travel

  1. Bridie Hill
    March 17, 2020 at 9:44 pm

    Well Easter in Spain for all us ferry travellers. Brittany Ferries have cancelled all ferries until the 12 April…

  2. Charlotte
    March 16, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    The Danes having to drive through Europe with the closed countries has been advised from the Foreign ministry, that they can drive in ‘transit’ through those, only stopping for petrol, and then continue…

  3. Bridie Hill
    March 16, 2020 at 2:54 pm

    We are in the same position our ferry from Santander is on the 29th. We had booked a hotel in Madrid but think we will just drive all through the night. Not sure how many times we may be stopped!

  4. john reeve
    March 16, 2020 at 2:26 pm

    Hi Martin

    Thank you for all your effort it is very much appreciated.

    We will as suggested go for it, let’s be honest they probably want as many of us away as is possible.

    We just hope the ferries keep running

    Thank you again

    Kind regards


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