If you have already travelled to Spain prior to Saturday, the UK Government's advice is that you should continue your holiday and return home as planned.
However, we would encourage these holidaymakers to proactively contact their travel insurance provider to see what cover they will receive while they remain on holiday.
Holidaymakers in Spain, who wish to change their travel plans and return to Northern Ireland earlier than planned, should immediately speak with their airline provider, tour operator or travel agent to see what options are available.
Holidaymakers who are yet to travel to Spain should think very carefully about travelling, as most travel insurance policies will now be invalid due to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s (FCO) updated advice.
Since Monday, the Balearic and Canary Islands have also been added to the list of areas where all non-essential travel should be avoided, so the same applies.
You are entitled to a full refund if your airline cancels your flight.
However, despite the FCO’s advice, many airlines are still flying to Spain, and if this is the case you are not entitled to a refund — but most airlines are allowing passengers to rebook without a fee, or offering vouchers for future travel instead.
Therefore we would encourage all passengers to contact their airline to discuss the options that are available to them.
Overall, your travel rights depend on whether you have booked flights, or whether you have booked a package holiday.
For package holidays, the Package Travel Regulations 2018 entitle you to a refund if the holiday cannot go ahead as planned.
Holidaymakers need to be cautious about booking future travel abroad.
The FCO’s recent change in travel advice has shown that things can change rapidly.
Passengers need to think what will happen to them, or their money, if they cannot, or do not want to travel.
Consumers requiring further help or advice can contact The Consumer Council on Freephone 0800 121 6022 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also visit The Consumer Council’s dedicated webpage for travel affected by COVID-19 at www.consumercouncil.org.uk/coronavirus.
Richard Williams is head of transport policy at The Consumer Council