The Covid-19 crisis here in Ibiza and Spain is a quickly moving situation but Islanders appear to be remaining calm.
The first working day of the lockdown was a strange affair. Whilst the majority stayed indoors, a lot of people went about their daily jobs as normal. The building sites were busy, the council workers still digging holes and fixing roadsigns. When is a lockdown not a lockdown – when it’s an Ibiza lockdown of course 🙂
Things will change in the coming days. To underline the seriousness of the situation the Spanish government has brought in new laws overnight with fines ranging from 100 – 600,000 EUR for infractions during the state of alarm. Also civil disobedience can be punished by up to 18 months in prison.
Ibiza has got it easy though as it’s still our off-season. Looking across the water to Benidorm, they have a big problem with tourists (mainly Brits) refusing to stay indoors as they want to ‘enjoy’ their holiday. It may be St Patrick’s long weekend but the reality of the situation is yet to hit home for some.
Spain closed its land borders last night which was not unexpected and in line with what other European countries have done. Ibiza Airport remains open but there were many cancelled flights and it’s only a matter of time before international flights cease to arrive except for government sponsored ‘mercy flights’. National flights will also cut back and heavily regulated.
Meanwhile an action plan has been put in place to repatriate all tourists from Spain to there own country. There were 25 international flights leaving the Balearics on Monday, all hotels in the Balearics will soon be closed until they get the green light to re-open again.
Ibiza is in the precarious position of receiving daily flights from Madrid where the Covid-19 virus is prevalent. Madrid has over 4000 cases whereas Ibiza has only 2 but can Spain stop its residents from returning to their family homes? If the virus continues to spread without hindrance then the answer is yes but the worry is that it could be too little too late with all eyes looking to the summer season.
The spontaneous applause happening all over Ibiza and Spain at 8pm goes viral every night. It’s a glorious show of unity towards all those working on the frontline during the crisis. Long may it continue but hopefully not for too long (if you know what I mean).
Government institutions are open but many are operating by telephone and e-commerce only. The post office is open 9.30-12.30 but restrictions may apply to limit numbers and social interaction so please be patient.
As always local government websites and credible social media pages are the best places to gather important information and please pass on wherever possible.
These are unprecedented times with so much happening on a daily basis but things will calm down as the rules tighten. All we can do is put our faith in the new measures, support the health workers, follow the guidelines and hope for a speedy resolution.
Special thanks to Lesley Donald and Tricia Templeton
VERY IMPORTANT: INFORMATION TAKEN FROM CREDIBLE PRESS AND GOVERNMENT SOURCES HOWEVER THE SITUATION IS CHANGING VERY QUICKLY. THIS BLOG IS WRITTEN FOR INFORMATION PURPOSES AND I TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY ERRORS GIVEN IN GOOD FAITH