Holidaymakers in Barcelona ‘should exercise caution’
Airport security workers call off strike after terror attacks
Investigators search for evidence at the site of a shooting in the coastal city of Cambrils, northeastern Spain. Photograph: EPA/JAUME SELLART
Flights travelling in and out of Barcelona are operating as scheduled today, but travel agents have cancelled planned day trips into the city centre over safety concerns for holidaymakers.
A spokeswoman for Ryanair confirmed the Irish airline’s flights into Barcelona “are operating as scheduled”, and the airline “will inform customers of any further travel updates” through the coming days.
If there is any change in flights passengers will be emailed by their airline informing them of the change.
Workers for airport security firm Eulen have temporarily suspended their strike in an industrial dispute at Barcelona airport in light of yesterday’s terror attack.
A spokeswoman for Barcelona airport said it was operating “as normal”, with no major delays expected to affect passengers using the airport.
However, Falcon, one of the most popular travel agents in Ireland, has cancelled all excursions and day-trip tours to Barcelona for tourists travelling with the company for Friday.
The Irish Travel Agents Association (ITAA) said Irish tourists in Barcelona should “exercise a high degree of caution”.
On Thursday evening a white Fiat van drove into a crowd on a tourist boulevard, killing 13 people and injuring more than 100 others.
In a second incident, believed to be linked, five suspects were killed by police during a similar van attack in Cambrils, near Barcelona. Six people and a police officer were injured.
Cormac Meehan, president of the ITAA, said: “Our advice to Irish holidaymakers in Barcelona or intending to travel to Barcelona is to exercise a high degree of caution and to follow all the advice of the local authorities.
“Passengers are likely to experience disruption and delays and are advised to stay in touch with their travel agent, carrier airline or tour operator,” Mr Meehan said.
“Spain and Ireland have been important tourist partners for many years. This year, almost two million Irish citizens will visit Spain, making it Ireland’s most popular holiday destination” he said.
Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said the terror attack should not deter Irish people from travelling to Spain or Europe.
“We should not let this change our way of life. But people should be vigilant,” Mr Coveney said on RTE’s Morning Ireland.
“The reality is that we should be aware of international terrorism in a way that we didn’t have to in the past. But the thought that the great European cities are places we wouldn’t travel is something we can’t countenance” he said.
The father and son (5) in a family of four Irish citizens, originally from the Philippines, were injured in the Barcelona attack.
“In a way it’s a miracle that more Irish people weren’t involved, given that there are so many Irish people in Spain, Barcelona and Cambrils at this time of year,” Mr Coveney said.