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Government insistent on no bending of Covid passport rules

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The Balearic government is warning that it will not tolerate any bending of the rules with regard to the implementation of the Covid passport for restaurants.

This follows the opening of sanctions proceedings against a restaurant where tables had been removed in order to create a capacity of lower than 50 diners. Some other restaurants are said to have done this.

With capacity under 50, the Covid passport isn’t a requirement. However, the minister for public function, Mercedes Garrido, points out that licences record capacities, and these must be respected. “It is no use removing tables in order to have lower capacity and so not comply with the regulation.”

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The government adds that proprietors know perfectly well what their legal capacities are. For months, the capacity has been a key factor for Covid measures applied to hospitality. It was used to determine how many people there could be. It now determines whether or not there is an obligation to request the passport.

Garrido says that the government is not at present considering an extension of the Covid passport requirement to bars and insists that this was never in the government’s plans. Everything will depend, she adds, on the pandemic and the possible increase in infections. “If incidence shoots up, other measures will be studied, as has been done since the pandemic began.”

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In hotels, meanwhile, there is confusion as to the presentation of the Covid passport, the tourism ministry saying that guests must show it each time they wish to enter dining facilities. Guests, the ministry explains, will not present the passport at reception when checking in, only when entering restaurants.

However, hotels are doing precisely the opposite. “In order to avoid later inconvenience, the logical thing is that they are asked for the QR of double vaccination when they arrive,” says one hotelier, noting that guests simply then have to give their room number when entering a restaurant.

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