Palma (dpa) – The sun burns from the sky over Mallorca, clean beaches and a turquoise Mediterranean Sea invite you to relax. Ideal conditions for a great summer holiday.
Also part of reality in the summer of 2021: The corona pandemic, which is currently causing the number of infections in Spain and Mallorca to go through the roof. The federal government has now pulled the emergency brake and declared all of Spain a high-incidence area. Anyone who returns home unvaccinated or not recovered from Corona from Tuesday can turn their thumbs in quarantine for at least five days.
But what would have hit the bad news in the first Corona Summer 2020 and sparked a spate of cancellations, hotel closures and a hasty return campaign of German holidaymakers is now being picked up relatively quietly by politics, the tourism industry and holidaymakers. “That’s not good news,” says Iago Negueruela laconically. He is the Minister of Tourism of the Balearic Islands, which includes Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera in addition to Mallorca. He refers to the vaccination campaign and hopes that the number of infections will fall quickly.
The president of the Association of Hotel Directors in the Balearics (AEDH), Alicia Reina, demands that there is finally a European regulation for the exemption of fully vaccinated people from the corona restrictions. In this regard, Germany’s decision to declare Spain a high-incidence area is regrettable, but correct. Because it privileges the vaccinated.
Apparently young German holidaymakers also feel privileged on the infamous Ballermann, the party mile in Palma. “We’ve been vaccinated for a long time, we’ve been through the two weeks, so everything is safe,” says a young man, his girlfriend nods. Sure, the incidence is relatively high and you might wonder if that’s a good thing. But “twice vaccinated, twice fun, I always say that,” he adds with a thumbs up, while another says, “Drink for a week.”
Older generations and holidaymakers with smaller children prefer to vacation in quieter parts of the island. “We accept the quarantine for our oldest daughter,” says Sabrina from Remagen, who was seven years and ten months old with her husband and two children in a holiday apartment. «We actually feel safe in Mallorca. Of course, the high incidence makes us feel nauseous and we avoid large groups,” says the German, who is being vaccinated.
An interim termination of the holiday would not be an issue. ‘We will stay until mid-August. We decided to sail around the island by boat. On the first attempt the machine failed and with a bang we reached the harbor. Now we’ll take the next shot.” Vanessa, on the other hand, is happy she’s leaving on Monday, a day before the rules for the high-incidence area come into effect. “I didn’t really have that on my screen. My boyfriend and I are both not yet fully vaccinated. We then have another week of vacation, but we certainly don’t want to crack that at home,” says the German. For some residents, the corona crisis has brought more than just inconvenience to tourism. Fernando Moscardo is one of them. He runs the popular beach bar “Kokomo” in the Cala Mayor area of Palma. “People can do whatever they want on the beach. They meet in large groups. On my terrace, a few meters away, only eight people are allowed to sit at a table, and only four in,” he complains. Although the restaurant is mainly frequented by foreigners, the landlord is not yet too concerned about the high incidence area. “Our customers are usually over 50 years old and have already been vaccinated. quarantine threatened.” Where the bar was in the red last year, the store is at least breaking even this season. In the “Carpe Diem” in Palma, on the other hand, the lights are out for good. The bar with a family atmosphere, frequented mainly by residents, had to close a month ago. “Water and electricity were cut off for me,” said Chile’s previous landlady Carolina Cucoch-Petraello. She owes the rent for one year. The owner now wants to sell the restaurant. The Chilean, who loses everything as a result, is left with her debts. “I’m going to file for bankruptcy and try a fresh start. I may have to emigrate to find work again,” says the 42-year-old. A similar fate threatens more people on the island, fears Heimke Mansfeld of the German aid organization Hope Mallorca. She finds the federal government’s decision to declare Spain a high-incidence area incorrect. “The hospitals are underused. It’s not that people die en masse.” Worse is the economic collapse threatened by the lack of tourists. “There will be layoffs. In the short season people could hardly save, there is hunger, misery and increasing crime.”