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UK Government in air bridge talks about places across Portugal

UK Government in air bridge talks about places across Portugal

On July 3rd, the UK government released a list of the countries it had air bridges with and a variety of the UK’s popular holiday destinations such as Spain, Italy, France and Greece were mentioned but one of the most noteworthy absences was Portugal.


In what could be deemed a complete U turn, the list of countries exempt from Uk quarantine will be reviewed this coming Monday, 27th July. The UK government is now considering regional air bridges to ensure people holiday in countries such as the United States and Portugal are no longer being subjected to the quarantine rules.


Portugal has continued to be one of the countries around the world with very minimal cases, its daily rate now averages 127, the lowest it has been since May 11th. Places such as the Algarve, Azores and Madeira have consistently been among the locations in Portugal that are virtually free of COVID-19 cases. 


Lisbon has been the highest ranking city in Portugal and has resulted in pushing the national rate up to 41.75 cases per 100,000, this is about the UK’s 20 cases per 100,000 threshold. 


The Department of Transport has suggested airports introduce testing passengers before travelling, or on arrival at UK airports if they are not already, thus allowing travel to open with countries like the United States. 


Mary Lussiana, a Telegraph correspondent for Portugal, supported the idea of regional air bridges stating, “There is talk about a regional air bridge to benefit the Algarve, Madeira and the Azores and indeed to make sense of a situation where neighbouring Spain is locking down thousands in the north of the country and remains on the ‘safe to go’ list for the UK, while Portugal remains on the ‘stop’ list.



“It is the bigger operations that are being crippled in the Algarve – the hotels which depend on tour operators who are, because of the FCO advice, unable to send clients. These hotels talk about doing something in the region of 12 percent of normal business for this time of year whilst wine suppliers to empty restaurants talk about doing only five per cent. How long can that go on?”


For many workers in the Portuguese tourism industry and British holidaymakers, hopefully not much longer.