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COVID Question, no conjecture

Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
As some on the forum are acutely aware of what is happening in regard to albergues (due to being involved) can I ask the following two questions.

In relation to the number of people in albergues have any official instructions been issued regarding the number of peaple in each sleeping area?

Also have official instructions been given regards the use of blankets/ covers. (E. G. must they be cleaned between each pilgrim? Or can they continue to be shared from one till the next)

The answers to these questions will help in decision making for those of us intending to travel but wondering whether to use private rooms exclusively and/or to bring a decent sleeping bag.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2012
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
Thanks Tincatinker. The documents took some reading through but answer my questions.

It looks like the official requirements go further than my innocent questions.
Use of payment cards at hostels? Never thought that would happen in Spain.
Looks like we'll all be disinfecting our own beds and using disposable sheets in rooms with less people. It all makes sense.

Since there are many ways to read between lines, I have decided that it looks like sleeping bags will be needed.


I like the bit about backpacks etc. going into plastic bags and not allowed on floors and beds. That may have the added advantage of interfering with the transport of chinches.

Another point mentioned that I hadn't thought if is the transport of bags between sites for those who avail themselves of the service.


Tincatinker, I truly appreciate your help. I am wanting to walk in 2022, this and links to the sites you have posted will help me decide when to actually do so at a time we can keep others as safe as we want to keep ourselves safe
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Also have official instructions been given regards the use of blankets/ covers. (E. G. must they be cleaned between each pilgrim? Or can they continue to be shared from one till the next)
Ideally, people who owned or managed albergues in 2020 or were hospitaleros in 2020 or walked in 2020 ought to answer this question but they were few and far between last year.

If you can handle Spanish and google for the terms for blankets and pilgrim albergues or for guide sanitary measures Covid-19 or similar - use for example this search term: mantas "albergues de peregrinos" - you find links to the guidelines that the Spanish Ministry for Industry, Commerce and Tourism published in May or June 2020 and that are addressed to hotels and albergues but not specifically to pilgrims albergues. A number of stakeholders then drew up protocols based on these guidelines, so they may vary from region to region or even from albergue to albergue.

There is a label called "Albergue Seguro" (Safe Albergue) based on a protocol worked out by the AMCS organisation whose members are 100+ municipalities on Spanish caminos. Their protocol mentions blankets explicitly: el albergue le ofrecerá, en su caso, la posibilidad de disponer de sábanas (desechables o no) y mantas, o bien de un saco de dormir: Como estos elementos deben ser lavados y desinfectados al día siguiente, lógicamente supone un esfuerzo suplementario y, por tanto, podrá traducirse en un coste adicional - so this says that the blankets must be washed and disinfected the following day, after having been used by a pilgrim, which means additional work and could involve extra cost.

There, not a hint of conjecture - but only because I decided to delete the last sentence that I had already written at the end of the second paragraph. :cool:
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
Thanks Kathar1na, I certainly wouldn't mind an extra cost. To be fair I expect that anyway, whether that be in a top hotel or humble albergue.

A sleeping bag will be on order. I think a very cheap bivi bag that can be disinfected and dried easily, using the bag inside will be something I will think about closer to the time.
 
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LTfit

Veteran Member
I ran Albergue Villares de Orbigo last year and followed the guidelines as stipulated by the government and my autonomous region of Castilla y Leon. Rather than using plastic bags for backpacks (I didn't want to contribute to more plastic waste) all bags were sprayed with disinfectant upon entering the albergue as well as shoes which were placed outside but protected from the elements. Blankets were only provided in the private rooms as these are of fabric which could be washed after each use. The ones normally provided to pilgrims in the dorm rooms are wool and so these were not given out. I heard that other albergues were not as strict. My suggestion is to bring a sleeping bag.

Given the continued problems in Spain, I do not see the regulations regarding capacity (50%) or hygiene changing any time soon.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
Thanks Tincatinker. The documents took some reading through but answer my questions.

It looks like the official requirements go further than my innocent questions.
Use of payment cards at hostels? Never thought that would happen in Spain.
Looks like we'll all be disinfecting our own beds and using disposable sheets in rooms with less people. It all makes sense.

Since there are many ways to read between lines, I have decided that it looks like sleeping bags will be needed.


I like the bit about backpacks etc. going into plastic bags and not allowed on floors and beds. That may have the added advantage of interfering with the transport of chinches.

Another point mentioned that I hadn't thought if is the transport of bags between sites for those who avail themselves of the service.


Tincatinker, I truly appreciate your help. I am wanting to walk in 2022, this and links to the sites you have posted will help me decide when to actually do so at a time we can keep others as safe as we want to keep ourselves safe
You are welcome. I didn't get to Spain in 2020, I think it highly unlikely I'll get there in 2021. 2022, who knows? Those links seemed to contain useful answers. As we are all aware the internet is a minefield of disinformation. I had a link to the official Spanish Government guidance/regulations but that now throws a 404 Error.

Link here for anyone who wants to wander Mincotur.gob.es in search of todays answers. https://www.mincotur.gob.es/es-es/P.../COVID-19/Paginas/Guias-sector-turistico.aspx
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
The link to the documents on the municipalities website (AMCS organisation):


The Spanish version concerning protection measures to be taken in and by albergues is 11 pages long and does mention blankets for example. The English and French versions have only a summary of 5 pages and don't mention blankets. They recommend that pilgrims carry a sleeping bag.

I noticed that this collection of documents also has a letter from the Xunta de Galicia, dated 15 January 2021, titled (machine translated) as: Update on the status of health measures against Covid in the Autonomous Community of Galicia and the status of public albergues.
 
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Flogwail

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020
I was one of those lucky ones who did get to walk for 20 days in September 2020 when there was a lull in covid numbers, not in Spain but in Portugal. The official situation there was that all albergues were operating at half capacity: generally with dorms this meant upper bunks weren't occupied. I stayed in a mixture of municipal and private albergues and the odd pension. Some, but not all establishments were compliant and on one or two occasions I had to point it out to hospitaleros/hosts who were ignoring guidelines where I felt vulnerable. However, mostly everyone involved; pilgrims and hosts did their best to be respectful of each other and it was a strangely 'normal' camino experience given the constraints of the regulations. Now just a few months have passed and it really feels like it was a lifetime ago.

Regarding the question of sleeping bags: In more than 6,500kms of various caminos I've always carried a light sleeping bag and used it probably 80% of the time. You would hope sheets are regularly changed, but it just isn't realistic to expect blankets to be washed every day...
or even week. I would never consider hiking anywhere for more than a few days with a pack on my back without taking a sleeping bag.
 
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Most all Camino authors have decided to use 2020 guides for 2021, with free PDF files with updates coming in the spring. Get yours today.

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
please see signature
In relation to the number of people in albergues have any official instructions been issued regarding the number of people in each sleeping area?

Also have official instructions been given regards the use of blankets/ covers.

@Jimmy Smith, assuming you are not already resident in Spain as a citizen of the EU (and/or Schengen area), I think your first question is "Can I travel to Spain."

As of a few moments the official advice from both the UK and US is no.

I guess your next question is "Can I freely travel through Spain". The impression I get from reading the links that @Tincatinker posted is that this is a moveable feast. At least both Galicia and Castilla y Leon (the central and final sections of a Frances) have heavy restrictions.

Kia kaha, kia māia, kia mana'wa'nui (Be strong, confident and patient) and get going when your travel will not be a worry to the inhabitants of where you pass.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
@Jimmy Smith, assuming you are not already resident in Spain as a citizen of the EU (and/or Schengen area), I think your first question is "Can I travel to Spain."

As of a few moments the official advice from both the UK and US is no.

I guess your next question is "Can I freely travel through Spain". The impression I get from reading the links that @Tincatinker posted is that this is a moveable feast. At least both Galicia and Castilla y Leon (the central and final sections of a Frances) have heavy restrictions.

Kia kaha, kia māia, kia mana'wa'nui (Be strong, confident and patient) and get going when your travel will not be a worry to the inhabitants of where you pass.
No, I will certainly not be travelling until it is safe. So your suggestion was never intended as my question.

What I wanted to know was the legal changes to albergues that may influence whether I bring a sleeping bag or not, and even if I want to stay in albergues . The information on how to find that out has been precisely linked.

So not a case of when, more a case of how C19 will have a legal lasting effect. As stated I'm not interested in conjecture. I now have the tools, thanks to earlier contributors, to find out the true facts.
 

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