You Can Visit Portugal Again, but Only If You're From These Countries (Video)
As proposed travel bubbles pop up around the world, Portugal is making its own travel plans in the wake of coronavirus.
According to Lonely Planet, officials in Portugal plan to reopen the country’s airports to tourists, but only if they are from the U.S., Canada, Brazil, or other countries with the Portuguese language.
In addition, officials in Portugal announced that countries in the Schengen Area, excluding Italy and Spain, will be able to access the country, according to Lonely Planet.
For those who don’t know, the Schengen Area is a group of 26 European countries that have abolished border control on their mutual borders. The Schengen Area includes Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland, according to the European Commission. It is essentially treated as one big country, from a passport and border control standpoint, and citizens are allowed to freely travel between these nations.
In Portugal, these new travel measures are simply the first phase of reopening the country. Travel restrictions are expected to ease as the spread of coronavirus slows down.
Although travel is becoming easier in Portugal, officials said that other public safety measures will remain, according to Lonely Planet. A statement from Visit Portugal notes that social distancing of two meters (about six feet) and wearing masks on public transit is mandatory, while masks in other public places and additional sanitation is advised.
Public transit, stores, bookshops, libraries, restaurants, cultural sites, boating or nautical activities, outdoor sports, golf courses, museums, zoos, aquariums, as well as terraces and promenades are now open. Religious services are set to open on May 30, while cinemas, theaters, concert halls, and shopping centers will open June 1. Beaches are planned to open June 6. Many of these places are operating at reduced capacity in order to observe social distancing guidelines.
Some testing and quarantine measures will also apply in certain parts of the country, especially on the Azores and Madeira archipelagos, according to Visit Portugal.
Australia and New Zealand, as well as Baltic countries like Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, have proposed travel bubbles that would allow people to travel between their countries in order to reopen their economies to tourists while still combatting the spread of the virus.
For more information about travel to Portugal, check out the Visit Portugal website.