PORTUGAL has seen its worst daily coronavirus increase yet in the last week and the UK is still in a national lockdown. Do I have to quarantine if I travel to Portugal?
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On October 15, Portugal recorded 6,035 new cases of coronavirus – the largest increase since the pandemic started. Because of this, the Portuguese Government has renewed its state of emergency in order to attempt to control the virus. What does this mean for holidays to Portugal, do I have to quarantine if I travel to Portugal?
Portugal’s state of emergency was due to end on November 23, but the Portuguese Government is extending the restrictions until December 8.
The state of emergency came into force on November 9 in 191 Portuguese municipalities, and it includes a curfew of 11pm in the week and 1am on weekends.
A surge of new infections means these restrictions will stay in force for an extra 15 days.
Portugal holiday: Portugal is not on the travel corridor list (Image: Getty)
Portugal holiday: Portugal is in an extended state of emergency (Image: Getty)
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At the start of November, Portugal’s Prime Minister António Costa alluded to the fact that the state of emergency could last until the end of the pandemic.
He told Antena 1 radio station: “I don’t want to say that the concrete measures will last permanently.
“There could be measures that last a weekend and disappear, but I think it is convenient having the juridical cover for them to be used in moments in which they are necessary. This way we avoid last minute crises.”
Portugal holiday: The country’s Prime Minister has hinted that it may be extended again (Image: Getty)
At present, anyone living in England, Wales or Northern Ireland cannot travel except for limited circumstances such as for work or education.
This means no holidays to Portugal, unless it is absolutely essential.
In Scotland, if you live in a level zero, one or two local authority area you can still travel overseas.
If you live in a level three or four area, you cannot leave the area.
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Do I have to quarantine if I travel to Portugal?
Last night, nine countries were added to the travel corridor list.
This included Israel, Namibia, Sri Lanka, and Uruguay, but not Portugal
Portugal is not on the travel corridor list, meaning you will need to quarantine on return if you go to Portugal.
On top of this, the FCO advice still advises against all but essential travel to mainland Portugal based on the current risk assessment.
This means you may find it hard to get travel insurance and you’re putting yourself at risk of being stranded if borders close or new rules come in to play at home or in Portugal.
Portugal holiday: Portugal has its own rules for you to follow while there (Image: Getty)
If you do travel to Portugal, you have to follow specific rules before entering.
Arrivals in mainland Portugal will be subject to health screenings including temperature checks.
Those travelling to Madeira, Porto Santo or the Azores must take a COVID-19 test before leaving for Portugal or on arrival.
If you test positive for coronavirus on arrival, you will be forced to self isolate until you receive a deconfinement certificate from the health authorities.
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While in Portugal, you must abide by the curfew and stay in after 11pm on weekdays and 1am on weekends.
You must also keep a social distance of two metres, wear a mask in enclosed spaces and where 2m can’t be maintained, and wash your hands regularly.
There will be rules on maximum occupancy on public transport, in shops, restaurants and other establishments and you are expected to follow them.
If you are caught breaching any of the regulations, you could be fined €500 on the spot.
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Saturday, 21st November 2020
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