Tenerife slaps health pass on restaurants and bars as EU tightens moves to stem delta explosion

·2-min read
A staff member at a coffee shop reviews a digital vaccination certificate as the Canary Islands government imposed stricter rules to control a surge in Covid-19 cases - REUTERS
A staff member at a coffee shop reviews a digital vaccination certificate as the Canary Islands government imposed stricter rules to control a surge in Covid-19 cases - REUTERS

Tenerife on Monday imposed vaccine passports on those wishing to enter bars and restaurants as European countries moved to stem a Covid resurge due to the highly contagious delta variant.

The largest of Spain's Canary Islands on Monday joined the Galicia region in requiring proof of Covid health status from citizens who want to go inside such establishments.

EU residents can use the Digital Covid Certificate and for UK tourists the NHS certificate or app is accepted to show proof of full vaccination, a PCR test in the last 72 hours, or of recovery from Covid-19 in the last six months.

The move came hours after France's parliament on Sunday night approved a health pass that makes proof of full vaccination or a negative test mandatory for visits to venues such as cinemas or nightclubs.

Starting in August entry to bars, cafes and restaurants will even be barred to outside terrasses without the pass.

Protests against vaccines and the government's new health pass requirement continue for the second week in Paris, France on July 24, 2021. - Anadolu
Protests against vaccines and the government's new health pass requirement continue for the second week in Paris, France on July 24, 2021. - Anadolu

The pass sparked heated debates in parliament and prompted 160,000 to take to the streets around the country against what protesters called an assault on freedom. "I don't call this freedom, I call this irresponsibility and egoism," said President Emmanuel Macron.

"Everyone is free to express themselves calmly with respect for the other," he said. "But freedom where I owe nothing to someone else does not exist".

The number of French who have received at least one jab has surpassed the 40-million mark, and four million people have booked a jab in the past two weeks.

There were also weekend protests in Italy, where so-called "Green certificates" will be required to enter indoor bars and restaurants, along with cultural venues.

Currently, they are only needed to attend wedding parties and visit homes for the elderly. Anyone caught flouting the new rules faces fines of €400 to €1,000.

The Covid passport may also be extended in the coming weeks to long-distance domestic travel, the workplace, and schools.

Meanwhile, Ireland allowed hospitality venues to reopen their doors for indoor trade on Monday, with customers required to show a vaccine passport before they can be served.

In Germany, pharmacies on Monday started offering digital health passes after a security scare last week. Several German regions now require people to show proof of full vaccination or a fresh negative test to sit indoors at a pub or restaurant, though not outdoors.

German Head of the Chancellery Helge Braun last week warned that vaccine passports may become compulsory nationwide in the autumn for restaurants, cinemas or stadiums if infection rates soar.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting