During this year, we have seen how the arrival of COVID-19 has changed our way of life, paralyzed business activity and limited mobility both within and between countries. This situation produced the end of presential classes at University. Lessons would be taught online. In this situation, students were unable to attend their classes, many Erasmus students decided to return to their countries. A few months later, already in summer, students begin to plan their next course, but what will be the coronavirus impact for the Erasmus in Spain.
March 2020, classes are suspended
In February and March 2020, the first outbreaks started in Europe. The awareness of the implications of this new virus began to increase. Although the first cases of risk were recorded in Italy in Europe, COVID-19 quickly spread to other countries. Each country decided to apply its measures to stop the spread of the virus. On March 16, 2020, Spanish Universities interrupted their classes and other face-to-face activities.
In this situation, Erasmus students saw how the coronavirus totally changed their plans. It changed their goal of studying in an international environment, learning a language or discovering new cultures. During this period, up to a quarter of the exchanges were cancelled, and even 37.5% of the participants had serious problems in relation to their programme, such as the impossibility of returning home or problems with accommodation.
Unprecedented position for the Erasmus programme
The European Union quickly reacted to the problem and developed a plan that would help students who were already on their Erasmus and those who were preparing to do so next year. From the very beginning, the European Union in collaboration with the Universities have worked to ensure that Erasmus+ returns in September.
Measures of flexibility have been taken to guarantee the best experience to the participants. The students who have not been able to fulfil their objectives will be able to extend their scholarship up to 12 more months, with a limit of 36 months. For those students who plan to participate during the 2020-2021 academic year. Be aware that the deadlines have been extended to reach the best option for students but also the administrations.
Current situation in Spain
Four months after Spain established one of the strictest lockdown in Europe, life is beginning to look like what it used to be. If you are thinking or have decided to do your Erasmus in Spain during the next academic year you are in luck. Each city may have particular safety regulations, such as decreasing capacity of bars, restaurants, museums and other closed spaces, hygiene or the mandatory use of masks. The most positive thing is that you will be able to travel all over Spain. From Erasmus Play we encourage students to follow the indicated safety measures. Don't miss a single detail of the country, from historic cities, beaches with amazing weather or impressive natural landscapes. The impact of coronavirus for Erasmus in Spain during the next course is evident, however, all the measures applied will provide a great experience to students.
If you have already decided that your next Erasmus year will be in Spain, and you probably are looking for accommodation. Don't worry, this may be a difficult task, thousands of students have this problem every year. However, Erasmus Play helps students to search and compare accommodation in their host city.