Thursday, 20 August 2020

Portugal to be added to the safe travel list according to UK Government

It has been announced that Portugal has been added to the UK government’s travel corridor list following a decrease in confirmed cases of coronavirus. This means that passengers arriving in England from Portugal at or after 4am on Saturday 22 August will not need to self-isolate, so long as they haven’t been in or transited through any other non-exempt countries in the 14 days preceding their arrival.

At the same time, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has updated its travel advice pages showing that Portugal has been added to the list of destinations that are exempted from the FCO’s global advisory against non-essential travel.

The FCO has also issued a guide for football fans possibly travelling to Lisbon for UEFA Champions League Finals:

All matches will be held behind closed doors.

Final23 August

Venue: Estádio Sport Lisboa e Benfica, Lisbon

Kick off time: 8pm (local time)

As well as this advice, check out our travel advice for Portugal

Travel insurance

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover.

Coronavirus: entry to Portugal

  • you will be subject to health screening on arrival at the airport
  • your temperature will be checked and if it is 38ºc or over or you show signs of being unwell, you will be referred to the health authorities at the airport
  • you may be required to take a COVID-19 test and to self-isolate until you receive your test result

Coronavirus: other measures

You must observe the rules on social distancing and hygiene.
  • maintain 2m social distancing
  • use a face mask in all enclosed spaces
  • wash your hands frequently
  • respect maximum capacity rules in shops and services
  • drinking alcohol in public places is banned, except for on pavement cafés and restaurants. Last orders are at midnight. Establishments close at 1am.
  • gatherings of more than 10 people are banned
  • beaches are subject to measures on social distancing and capacity. Check details and occupancy levels on the Portuguese Environment Agency website or download the “Info Praia” app
  • you can be fined up to €500 if you breach the regulations

Passports and visas

  • you don’t need a visa to travel to Portugal, but your passport should be valid for the period of your stay
  • you must show some form of identification if asked by the police or judicial authorities; in most cases, it should be sufficient to carry a photocopy of the data page of your passport, but you can be asked to produce the original document
  • if you lose your passport, you can apply for an emergency travel document online; you will have to collect the document from the Consulate in Lisbon or Portimão
  • remember to bring your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) but also take out travel insurance even if you’re only going for a short period, it could save you a lot of money if you get into difficulties.

Getting around Lisbon

  • local and inter-regional travel is permitted in Portugal.
  • taxis are beige-coloured or black and green; they’re available at the airport and at taxi ranks around the city; you can flag down taxis in Portugal
  • if you use taxis or private hire, sit in the back and respect the rules on maximum capacity
  • if you use public transport, avoid travelling at peak times and ensure you disinfect your hands before and after your journey. Maintain your distance from other passengers as much as possible
  • facemasks are mandatory on public transport, in taxis and private hire for everyone over the age of 10
  • if you’re driving, you should carry your passport, valid UK driving licence, car logbook or rental contract and insurance; the police can fine you on-the-spot if you don’t have these documents
  • there are tolls on Portuguese motorways; you can get a fine if you don’t pay toll fees so remember to carry enough cash with you; don’t use the green lanes (VV - Via Verde) at toll pay points; these are for motorists who subscribe to the automatic pay system; some roads in the north of Portugal and in the Algarve have electronic tolls (SCUTs); check how to pay these before you travel


  • look out for establishments that have been certified “Clean and Safe” by the Portuguese Tourism Board
  • as in any other city beware of pickpockets and bag snatchers at airports, railway stations, around the town centre and when using public transport; only carry what you need and leave spare cash and valuables in hotel safety deposit box or split it up and carry it in different places
  • there’s no time difference between the UK and Portugal

Contact the British Embassy in Lisbon

British Embassy
Rua de São Bernardo, 33
1249-082 Lisbon

Telephone: +351 21 392 4000 (also for out of hours emergencies)

For more information, please visit British Embassy Lisbon website

Emergency services numbers

  • If you are feeling unwell and need advice, call the health authority’s helpline on: (+351) 808 24 24 24, press 9 for English
  • For emergency assistance, dial 112

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