Travel advice from ABTA Magazine as tourism restarts.
More than 2.8million Britons visited Portugal in 2018, making it among the UK’s most popular destinations – although way behind its neighbour Spain, which had 15.6 million visitors from the UK. However, most people are concentrated in one area – according to research by LoveHolidays, the Algarve is the fourth most popular region for British holidaymakers anywhere in the world, behind only Majorca, Antalya and Tenerife.
As lockdown continues to ease, the government has revealed a list of 74 countries from which inbound tourist and returning travellers do not need to self-isolate (also known as the travel corridors list) – ending its blanket 14-day quarantine policy. However, it is not necessarily the case that Britons can enter the countries on the exemptions list without needing to quarantine, or that flights are even currently available (research suggests as little as a third of the countries can be visited without restrictions). Although firm favourites France, Spain and Italy made it on to lists revealed by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Department for Transport (DfT), the USA and Portugal were notable exceptions. Scotland has released its list of exemptions – which is the same as the UK list, but with Spain and Serbia omitted.
The FCO currently advises against all non-essential international travel to Portugal, apart from Madeira and the Azores; however, the requirement to self-isolate on return to the UK from Portugal includes both Madeira and Azores. Although Portugal does not require travellers to quarantine on arrival into the country, if travelling to Madeira, Porto Santo or the Azores, visitors must take a Covid-19 test before they travel or on arrival. Travellers who ignore FCO advice will not be covered by travel insurance.