THE UK GOVERNMENT has released new travel advice for double-vaccinated British tourists travelling to Portugal. Although Government advice states the NHS COVID-19 pass will be accepted as proof of vaccination to enter Portugal, some airlines still require passengers to take a test.
On October 8, the UK Government updated its travel advice for Portugal stating that double-vaccinated passengers with an NHS COVID-19 pass no longer needed a negative test to travel. However, in a new update today, it has said passengers must check with airlines as some still require tests.
The latest update to the travel advice for Portugal said: “If you have an NHS COVID-19 Pass or an EU digital COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing you have been fully vaccinated with an EU approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days before you travel, or an EU COVID-19 recovery certificate showing you have recovered from COVID-19 no less than 11 days and no more than 180 days of when you are due to travel:
“You do not need to have a COVID-19 test to enter Portugal, however some airlines have not yet updated their requirements. Check with your airline before you travel.
“Be prepared to show a digital or paper copy of your COVID-19 vaccination or recovery certificate when you check-in for your flight, and complete an online passenger locator card.”
Unvaccinated passengers will still need to present a negative COVID-19 test to enter Portugal.
Before the rules were changed, Portugal only accepted the EU vaccination certificate and a few other third country vaccination certificates but not the UK.
Although the rules have changed, the Government states “some airlines have not yet updated their requirements.” Passengers could be denied boarding without a negative test on certain airlines.
Some passengers have expressed their frustration on social media after still being required to take a test despite the rule change.
Phil Cabra Netherton tweeted: “Was just told by BA staff that ‘advice changed literally two hours ago’ and that was why I needed a lateral flow test to board a flight to Lisbon from Heathrow T5.
“I was told that the NHS vaccination certificate was not valid for travel to Portugal and had to do a lateral flow test at the airport.”
Jon Holmes tweeted on October 10: “The advice changed two days ago on the FCO website, but it hasn’t filtered down. “Brinkwire Summary News”.