The British were angry because they decided to move Portugal to the “Amber List” to bring travel chaos and families to pay hundreds of dollars for PCR testing
When the country enters the UK’s “Amber List” next week, Britons vacationing in Portugal will have to pay hundreds of pounds for the Covid test.
Today, the government advises Britons not to go to popular destinations and to allow returning passengers to self-quarantine from 4 am on Tuesday morning, thus dispelling thousands of people’s travel plans.
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Passengers returning from Portugal and other countries Amber list countries Will be required to perform a pre-departure PCR Covid test and provide a negative result.
Then, they will have to pay for two additional tests on the second and eighth days of the 10-day quarantine.
Britons can choose a private Covid test provider, which costs between £120 and £300 per person-or Boots and Superdrug offer slightly cheaper options.
Airlines and travel agencies have begun offering discounted exams-three exams through TUI cost £60 each.
This means that a family of four may cost between 240 and 1,200 pounds to fly home-plus parents may need to take 10 days off.
People currently in Portugal claim to have a two to three day waiting list for testing because the center is “overloaded”-which means that some people may be forced to spend money on private services to ensure they can go home in time.
Before the country was downgraded to the UK’s banned amber list on June 8, the British were sprinting wildly.
Portugal was downgraded from the green status today after ministers sounded the alarm about the worrying new “Nepal mutation” of the Indian variant found in the holiday hotspot.
Confirming the “difficult but decisive decision” of the UK-first disclosed by the Sun-Grant Sharps warned that 68 cases of the Indian “Delta” variant have been detected in Portugal.
These include new cases of mutations in Nepal-the minister said it is not yet clear whether the vaccine is effective against this strain.
Passengers described the chaos at the Portuguese airport as people scrambled to return home before the new regulations came into effect next week.
Sarah Vowles, who is waiting to fly from Faro to Luton, said that EasyJet’s “organization is very bad.”
She added: “I have been waiting in the baggage check-in queue for Luton flight for an hour and a half??.
“We should board the plane within 10 minutes. 2 desks for 2 flights are not good enough!”
John Joyce and his family decided to book a Portuguese holiday as soon as Britain added Portugal to the green list of foreign destinations about three weeks ago because he “needs a break.”
But he described the British government’s latest move as “a bit unfair” and added: “Some families have children with them and some people have already booked vacations. This puts pressure on people including me.”
A British bar owner in the Algarve said he was “very shocked” by the decision.
Gary Search, operating Fat Cats and Fat Cats on the pier-both popular resorts in Albufeira-said: “One of the bars is 98% of British tourists, and at the other, we have about 50% of our customers The British are mostly holidaymakers.
“We are very shocked by today’s decision.”
He said that the bar was “actually just getting started” after being “busy all week,” but the news “smashed things up” for his business.
Gary from Southend-on-Sea added: “We have the pulse and know more or less what is going on, but we really don’t think it will happen.
“For everyone in the Algarve, not just us, but also tourists, this is a complete nightmare.”
The 54-year-old said that last week was “like the first summer since 2019”, but all this is about to change.
He continued: “I think that even if people try to find a flight home before the new regulations come into effect and must be quarantined, the problem they face will be that they have to undergo a Covid test before departure, and a two- to three-day period. Waiting list because the Covid testing center here is overloaded.
“People need to take a Covid test to go home, so they won’t be able to test until Saturday or Sunday at the earliest, which makes it impossible for those who can reschedule their flights.
“Portugal has always been the only major European resort on the green list, and we are located in a tourist resort in Albufeira.
“Basically last week was like summer for the first time since 2019. It’s great.
“We have a snack bar, and we have been fully operational.
“Now it will become almost nothing again, I think it may only be a few hundred pounds a day, and people will disappear this weekend. This is a disaster.”
Charlotte Cheddle, 22, from England, will have to quarantine for 10 days when he flies back to the UK next week.
She urged the British government to either “completely prohibit international travel or communicate with people appropriately”.
“It’s stupid,” she said. “We worked hard to conduct private testing. We paid for everything and we have done everything we can to ensure safety.”
Portuguese officials also slammed the country’s downgrade, Describing it as “very unfair.”
After the announcement, the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs wrote on Twitter: “We have noticed that the United Kingdom has decided to remove Portugal from its’green’ travel list. The logic of this decision is difficult to understand.”
Eduardo Jessus, Director of the Madeira Culture and Tourism Bureau, said: “We are already responding to the British government and put forward a series of arguments that we think are valid, and pointed out that this decision is totally unfavorable for Madeira. Right, inadequate and higher than in short, it is very unfair.”
Joao Fernandes, chairman of the Algarve Tourism Board, described the British decision to downgrade Portugal from green to amber as a “serious setback”.
In addition to those trapped in Portugal, thousands of Britons who hope to flee Portugal in the coming weeks are now facing the challenge of rebooking or getting their money back.
Twitter is flooded with requests for refunds and rescheduling as people are left in limousines waiting for time for the next safe trip.
If the Ministry of Foreign Affairs changes its position and recommends not to visit Portugal, further complications may arise, which will invalidate travel insurance.
The Ministry of Transport has previously warned that Britons should be wary of the country’s possible adoption Not on the green list There is little notice-this may cause holiday chaos in the summer.
The assessment of whether a country is on the red, yellow, or green list is based on a series of factors, including the proportion of the population that has been vaccinated, infection rates, emerging mutations, and access to reliable scientific data and genome sequencing.
Portugal has lifted most of the blockade restrictions, and the government has been severely criticized for allowing thousands of British football fans, mostly without masks, to meet in Porto during the Champions League final last weekend.
The country with a population of more than 10 million reported 769 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday, the highest single-day increase since early April. The total number of infections is now 851,031.
Portugal slams the decision to move the country to the “Amber List” to crack down on holidaymakers
The UK has recorded 5,274 Covid cases, the highest number of daily infections since March
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Portugal’s entry into the UK’s amber list is a huge blow to the country’s tourism industry, which accounts for a large part of GDP and makes the UK one of its largest foreign markets.
Lisbon’s restaurant manager Ana Paula Gomes said: “It’s not good for businesses, but we will slowly reach our goals – or at least I really hope so, because our The economy is declining.
Eliderico Viegas, head of the Algarve Regional Hotel Association, said that the British move will hit the industry like a “cold water bucket”.