Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.01 13 Jul 2021


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One Irish bar owner in Spain says she is counting on tourists flocking to her bar in the coming weeks.

It comes as hundreds of thousands of Irish people will be receiving their EU Digital COVID Cert in the next few days days, either by post or e-mail.

The certs - aimed at allowing easier travel between EU member states - will be available for anyone who has been fully vaccinated, as well as those who've recovered from COVID-19 in the last six months.

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However, only the former group will be receiving the certs automatically.

Tracy Harmon is the owner of Harmon's Bar in Elvira, near Málaga, in Spain.

She told Lunchtime Live her bar has been open most of the time, but needs the tourists.

"It's hot and it's quieter than we'd like and we're ready for you guys to come back over.

"We've been open most of the time through, we only closed for two months when the pandemic started last year.

"And then we were closed for about 17 days in January, and since that we've been open every single day.

"And we're just waiting - we're waiting for Ireland and the UK to open and let travel.

"We can't wait for you guys to come back".

Restrictions

Tracy says in terms of restrictions, the biggest one is closing time.

"We're pretty much free; as a bar owner my restrictions are I have to close by 1 o'clock.

"The last entrants into the bar is midnight, and that needs to be service on the terrace.

"On the terrace, if you're sitting outside, it's tables of up to eight - and inside we can run at 75% capacity, and that's tables of six.

"But to be honest with you - all the way through since the pandemic's happened - space is not an issue, we've got plenty of space.

"And it's outdoor living in Spain, you go to the beach - most of what you do is outdoors".

And Tracy says it has been a struggle for his business, especially now.

"We're not even at 50% of what I should be for July, so it's been pretty dire.

"My bar is an Irish bar and my clientele is predominantly Irish and British, and that's what we set ourselves up to be.

"So of course it's been a really tough 15 months.

"We do have a good ex-pat base here and a lot of them have chosen to stay because they could have freer living here.

"But we're in need of the tourists".

Tracy adds that case numbers there are on the rise.

"We've got an increase going on, like most of Europe, it's amongst the younger people because they're not vaccinated so much.

"So we have got a little increase going on but hopefully it can be contained.

"But I think most of Europe that are travelling are double vaccinated and just get tested.

"We're all used to living with a little bit more care than what we would do before, and the same happens here".

Main image: An outside view of Harmons Bar in Spain in October 2020. Picture by: Facebook/Harmons Bar Elviria

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EU Digital COVID Cert Harmon's Bar International Travel Spain Tracy Harmon Travel

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