THERE is good news for expats on the Costa Almeria today Friday as the Health Minister confirmed the province will move into the second phase of the lockdown de-escalation on May 25.
This means residents and business owners can look forward to a further easing of restrictions on activities and daily life.
Given the summer like temperatures this week, one of the most eagerly anticipated changes will no doubt be the possibility of going to the beach to swim and sunbathe, once the individual councils give the go-ahead for their areas, and having to observe rules on social distancing and health safety.
Another significant change will be that bars, cafes and restaurants will be allowed to open the doors to their premises, although with no bar service.
Customers will have to be served at tables and there will be a maximum capacity limit of 40 per cent. Tables must also be well spaced out.
Hotels will be allowed to open up communal areas, but at one-third of capacity.
Night-time watering holes and discos will not be allowed to open up in this phase.
Shopping centres can open too, but with a capacity limit of 30 per cent and guarantees of a two-metre space between shoppers, while communal and recreation areas will remain out of bounds.
Street markets will be able to have 33 per cent of the usual maximum number of stalls, up from 25 per cent under Phase one.
For gatherings with friends or family, the limit on the number of people goes up from 10 to 15.
Wedding celebrations are possible in the second phase, but with no more than 50 people in enclosed areas and 100 in the open air, and sticking to protocols on social distancing and safety.
Cultural events can also go-ahead, but with a top number of 50 people in an enclosed area and up to 400 in the open air and people must be seated.
Driving schools, academies and training centres can reopen. So too can cinemas, theatre and similar cultural spaces, but at no more than 33 per cent capacity.