PRESS RELASE 029
Embassies and consulates help more than 1,200 Spaniards return home in last few hours
23/03/2020
​​​The 215 Spanish embassies and consular offices coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation have helped more than 1,200 Spanish tourists stuck abroad return to Spain over the weekend. Thanks to the hard work of the more than 4,500 professionals deployed around the world, the following special flights coordinated by the Spanish embassies and consulates-general have departed over the last few days to bring Spanish citizens abroad back to Spain.
Sunday, 22 March:

  • 270 Spanish passengers returned in a special flight chartered by Iberia that left Buenos Aires on Sunday and arrived in Madrid on Monday, 23 March;
  • 359 Spaniards will arrive in Madrid today on a flight that took off from Quito on 22 March, which included passengers from  Guayaquil;
  • 120 Spaniards arrived on Sunday in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria from Cape Verde on a special Binter flight:
  • 22 Spaniards arrived in Madrid from Tunisia on an Air Europa flight;
  • 48 passengers arrived on an Aegean flight from Athens to Barcelona.

Saturday, 21 March:

  • 106 people, including 83 Spaniards, flew back from Gambia to Las Palmas on a Binter flight;
  • 42 Spaniards returned on a special Aegean flight from Athens to Madrid;
  • 12 Spanish tourists returned on commercial flights between Friday, 20 and Saturday, 21 March from Sudan.

Friday, 20 March:

  • 196 Spaniards returned on a flight from Santo Domingo to Madrid; 
  • 32 Spaniards took off on a flight from Algeria to Spain thanks to the efforts of the embassy.

Another special flight chartered by Iberia has been announced, to bring back approximately 200 Spaniards from Senegal on Tuesday. It is also expected that a ferry will leave Civitavecchia for Spain on Tuesday which will allow Spaniards affected by the situation in Italy to return to Spain. This is in addition to a total of almost 540 Spaniards that were able to return on flights chartered by the Maltese authorities from Valetta to Spain, and the more than 600 passengers that took the ferry from Civitavecchia to Barcelona last week. As well as these special journeys, it should be mentioned that citizens continue to return affected by the COVID-19 restrictions to Spain from those airports that commercial flights continue to operate from.

The Spanish embassies and consular offices around the world continue to employ all their resources, despite these difficult circumstances, to ensure the return of Spanish citizens from abroad. To that end, they facilitate the return of Spanish tourists through contact with airlines, transport providers and travel agencies, paying close attention to those Spaniards that are in particularly vulnerable situations. They maintain contact with citizens in each country through an emergency consular hotline operational 24 hours a day, announcements through the social media and email to inform them of all the ways to return to Spain, whether on commercial airlines, through the support of local authorities or in collaboration with EU partners.

In Madrid, the ministerial department’s crisis unit is operational 24/7, attending to an average of more than 6,000 phone calls a day to ensure that all Spanish tourists can return home. The minister, Arancha González Laya visited the office of the crisis unit this weekend to express her support to the more than 40 public servants which, together with about 100 volunteers from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, are fielding the enquiries entering on +34 913 948 900. The minister also had the chance to personally attend to and provide a response to some cases.




-NON OFFICIAL TRANSLATION-

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