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Portugal to welcome UK tourists from May 17, tourism board says

file photo: tourism during covid 19 in algarve region
Preparing for the tourist season in downtown Albufeira, Portugal REUTERS/Rafael Marchante/File Photo

Portugal will allow tourists from Britain to enter from May 17, following Britain’s go-ahead last week for its holidaymakers to travel to Portugal from that date, the national tourism board said on Friday.

European Union rules prohibit non-essential travel from outside the bloc, making Portugal‘s decision to allow British tourists in an exception.

Tourists from Britain will be required to present upon arrival evidence of a negative PCR taken in the previous 72 hours, said the Turismo de Portugal authority, which is part of the Economy Ministry.

It added that the tourism authorities were making sure that Portugal‘s testing capacity meet the demand from tourists and that the air travel capacity between Britain and Portugal was being reinforced.

Britain added Portugal to a “green” list of foreign destinations a week ago, allowing Britons to travel there from May 17 without needing to quarantine when returning home.

The European Commission proposed on May 3 easing travel restrictions from outside the EU for people who were fully vaccinated or came from countries with low case numbers. The European Council is due to discuss the proposal on May 17.

Under the new British rules, travellers to Portugal will only need to take one coronavirus test upon returning to the UK. Other popular European holiday spots for Britons like Spain and Cyprus are on the “amber list”, meaning that travellers would need to quarantine for 10 days upon return, and take two tests.

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