Portugal's easing of travel restrictions discussed by Simon Calder
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Yesterday, the Portuguese government announced that unvaccinated arrivals from the UK would no longer face a mandatory period of quarantine when visiting the mainland. Fully vaccinated Britons have been able to enter Portugal without quarantine for some time now.
However, there are still some entry requirements both vaccinated and unvaccinated Britons must follow in order to be welcomed across the border.
What’s more, the UK continues to hold Portugal on the amber list, meaning quarantine and testing rules still apply to arrivals.
What are the latest rules for unvaccinated UK travellers visiting Portugal?
Travellers from the UK are eligible to enter Portugal, even if they have not been vaccinated against COVID-19.
However, they will be required to show a negative COVID-19 test.
According to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO): “This can be an RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure or an antigen test taken within 48 hours of departure.”
The travel advice adds: “Check your test result identifies the type of test taken and gives your name, date of birth, the date and time the sample was collected and the date of the result.”
Testing rules apply to all arrivals aged 12 years old and older.
NHS testing services should not be used to facilitate travel, according to the FCDO. Travellers should therefore obtain a test via an approved private service.
Portugal’s government states that the latest rule will remain in place until September 16, at which point it will be reviewed.
Visitors to Portugal are also required to complete an online passenger locator card.
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What are the latest rules for fully vaccinated UK travellers visiting Portugal?
Passengers who have been fully vaccinated are able to enter Portugal without testing or quarantine, provided they can show adequate evidence of their inoculation status.
Portugal is accepting the NHS Covid pass for travel, as well as the EU digital Covid vaccination certificate.
Travellers must have been vaccinated with a jab which has been approved by the EU.
The vaccine schedule must have been completed 14 days or more prior to travel.
Vaccinated arrivals must also complete an online passenger locator card.
What are the travel rules for returning to the UK from Portugal?
Mainland Portugal remains on the UK’s amber list for travel.
This means that unvaccinated travellers entering the UK from Portugal must self-isolate for 10 days.
They must take a pre-departure Covid test within the 72 hours before travelling, as well as book and pay for a day two and day eight PCR test.
Fully vaccinated travellers do not face quarantine, though must still take a pre-departure and day two PCR test.
All travellers must also fill out a passenger locator form before departure. This should include the details of their pre-booked Covid PCR tests.
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