Is driving more difficult than flying

Why it is currently so difficult to fly from Germany to Mallorca

Just a year ago it was easy to fly back and forth between Mallorca and Germany. Check in online, drive to the airport and get on the plane, that's it. The reality this winter is different. You stand nervously at the check-in counter and worry that you have actually thought of all the papers, tests, QR codes and other requirements that the pandemic brought with it. Although these requirements can all be found somewhere on the Internet, they also change again and again.

Current status: Spain has been stipulating a negative test result (PCR or the TMA method, largely unknown in Germany) since November 23, in order to be allowed to enter the country at all. This must not be older than 72 hours, i.e. the test must not have been carried out more than 72 hours before entering Spain. In addition, the ID card or identity card number must be noted on the document. For Germany, the following applies from January 11th: Anyone entering from a foreign risk area such as Mallorca must be tested in future - directly upon arrival or in the 48 hours before. The obligation to a ten-day quarantine remains. It can also be shortened by a negative result of another corona test carried out on the fifth day after entry at the earliest.

So anyone who wanted to visit the family in Germany over Christmas or New Year's Eve would experience grotesque situations at the airport, like the MZ editor. It is estimated that around half of the passengers booked from Nuremberg to Palma who arrived at the airport on Sunday (3.1.) Were not allowed to board due to formal errors. Around 15 people queued at the Ryanair counter in the morning to take the only direct flight to Palma in all of January. The two employees at the counter had to turn them down one after the other because one of the requirements was not met. A woman stood in line with her young son and presented a PCR test, which would have been 74 hours old on arrival in Palma and therefore older than the maximum allowed 72 hours. The two Ryanair employees did not let the woman check in, she had to find a flight from another airport and organize a new PCR test.

Also in line: Mallorca resident Christina Immler (name changed) with her partner and their son. The young family was also not allowed on board because an ID number was missing on their PCR test results. "I couldn't believe it at first," Immler told MZ. During the free PCR test at the Czech border, which was set up there for cross-border commuters, she presented her ID and assumed that the number would automatically be included in the test that was not the case.

Neither did her friend, who had been tested in a hospital. So the young family had to book a new flight, this time from Frankfurt. "We had ourselves tested again at the Czech border and made sure that the ID number was actually entered in the test result," says Immler. On Monday we went to Frankfurt Airport, where the Ryanair employees there checked the test. but did not want to see whether an ID number was noted on it. The newly booked flight from Frankfurt incurred additional costs of 160 euros.

Those who only traveled with hand luggage could also be turned away directly at the gate. One passenger had a negative PCR test with an ID number, but the number was incorrect. He too had to stay on the ground and could hardly calm down.

Apparently, in addition to the departure airport in Germany, it also depends on which airline you are traveling with. According to a spokesman, Eurowings is not as categorical as Ryanair. The employees checked whether the passengers had a PCR test with them. “For those without such proof, we offer a free rebooking. However, we as Eurowings are not actively unloading, "the spokesman continues. However, passengers should be advised that they could get into trouble in Palma without a test.

When arriving in Mallorca it often turns out that no one is interested in the PCR test. Only the QR code is checked. The MZ editor was only asked if he had done a PCR test.

The effort to get a negative test result in Germany remains high. Many have no choice but to drive several hours in the car and get tested in one of the test stations operated by the Centogene company in Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berlin or Düsseldorf. As an asymptomatic person, you can also get a throat swab for a fee, the result of which often arrives after a few hours.

The rush is correspondingly high; shortly before Christmas, people sometimes had to wait in line for more than six hours. A user on Facebook reports that she was at the airport at 11 a.m. to be tested. The test station closed at 3 p.m., but because of the long line, it wasn't her turn. The next day she had to queue for another three hours. The rush has been lower since the turn of the year. The transmission of the results usually works within a few hours, even if you don't buy the much more expensive express test.