What happens if you catch Covid in Spain, France, Greece, US & Portugal – and you STILL have to isolate in some places

WITH Covid cases on the rise again in Europe, catching it while on holiday is a real possibility.

If that does happen, each country has its own rules and regulations for those who test positive.


Some countries’ Covid isolation rules depend on whether or not you are vaccinatedCredit: Getty

Here are the rules for some of the most popular holiday destinations for Brits, should you catch Covid while abroad this summer.


If you have symptoms or test positive for Covid during your stay in Spain, you are not required to self-isolate, but you are asked to inform direct contacts.

The Spanish government also recommends taking the following extra precautionary measures for 10 days from diagnosis or from when symptoms began:

  • Wear a mask
  • Reduce social interactions and avoid crowded spaces & large events
  • Avoid contact with people at high risk (including older people, people with health conditions and pregnant women)
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Hotels and other accommodation providers may have their own Covid protocols in place, which you will be expected to follow.

Your accommodation provider may have a list of private doctors that they can call to assess your symptoms and conduct a Covid test.

You will be responsible for the cost of any treatment provided by a private doctor or hospital.

Rapid lateral flow tests (‘pruebas de antígenos’) are widely available in pharmacies in Spain for a fee.

If your symptoms persist or get worse, you should call your regional hotline.


Travellers who tested positive for Covid while in Greece used to have to self-isolate for five days, but that is no longer the case, following a major rule change this week.

The government announced that there will be no more quarantine rooms at hotels.

Under the new guidelines, travellers in Greece will be able to choose if they want to remain in self-isolation for the remaining time they are in the country.


If you test positive for Covid in France and you’re fully vaccinated (including a booster) or if you’ve had Covid in the last four months, you are required to self-isolate for seven days.

That begins from either the day on which you first developed symptoms, or seven days from the date of the positive test result.

Self-isolation can be reduced to five days if you take a negative PCR or antigen test (supervised, not self-administered) on day five and you have not displayed any symptoms over the previous 48 hours.

These isolation rules also apply to children under the age of 12, regardless of their vaccination status.

If you’re unvaccinated or partially vaccinated and you haven’t had Covid in the last four months, you must self-isolate for 10 days.

Self-isolation can be reduced to seven days if you take a negative PCR or antigen test on day seven and you have not displayed any symptoms over the previous 48 hours.

This could be in your current accommodation, but French authorities do not provide or pay for quarantine accommodation.


If you test positive for COVID-19 in Portugal, you will have to self-isolate, but how long depends on where you are.

If you’re in mainland Portugal, you’re required to self-isolate at your own expense for at least seven days.

If you’re in Madeira, Porto Santo or the Azores, you’ll have to self-isolate at your own expense for at least five days.


If you test positive in America you are required to isolate for five days from the date of your positive test, regardless of vaccine status.

You are also asked to wear a well-fitting mask if you have to be around others in your home.

You can end isolation after five full days if you are fever-free for 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medication and your symptoms are improving.

You should then wear a well-fitting mask for 10 full days any time you are around others and are instructed to not go to places where you are unable to wear a mask.

You are required to wait a full 10 days to travel, so may have to extend your stay if you test positive with fewer than ten days of your trip remaining.

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Different insurance companies will offer different levels of cover should travellers have to cancel anything in case of Covid.

Brits have been warned that travel restrictions could come back if cases continue to rise as they are.

Covid cases are rising across Europe as thousands of Brits prepare for summer holidays


Covid cases are rising across Europe as thousands of Brits prepare for summer holidaysCredit: Getty

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