Unvaccinated Britons can travel to Portugal without quarantine as rules relaxed

Unvaccinated Britons can visit Portugal without having to quarantine after the country loosened its travel rules in a boost for last-minute summer holidays.

Travellers still need to show a negative PCR or rapid antigen coronavirus test result but will not need to prove they have had the jab upon arrival at the popular holiday destination.

Previously, visitors had to show they had been fully vaccinated with an EU-approved vaccine, including Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Moderna, upon entry to mainland Portugal or they would have to quarantine for 14 days.

Children under 12 do not need to show proof of a negative test and the changes also apply to EU countries and several other nations including Brazil, China, the US and Australia.

Travel association Abta said the rule relaxation means the holiday destination will become “even more appealing” for Britons.

A spokesperson said: “Portugal is a popular destination with UK holidaymakers – 2.8 million Brits travelled there in 2018.

“It offers beautiful beaches, fantastic cities and lovely countryside, not to mention a vibrant cafe and restaurant culture.

“The relaxation of travel requirements is likely to make it even more appealing for anyone looking to take a late summer break.”

Under mainland Portugal’s new rules, lateral flow tests must have been taken within 48 hours of departure while PCR tests must have been completed within 72 hours, and travellers must also complete a passenger locator card before departure.

Travellers to the Portuguese islands of Azores and Madeira must show either a negative PCR test or a vaccine certificate to avoid a two-week quarantine, although they can have a free test on arrival if they agree to go into “prophylactic isolation” – a 12 to 24-hour waiting period for the test result.

Portugal is on the UK’s amber list for travel, meaning vaccinated Britons will still have to take a test three days before returning to the UK, and another two days after arriving back.

Unvaccinated travellers must also take these tests and quarantine for 10 days once back in the UK.

The Portuguese islands of Madeira and Azores are on the UK green list.