Portugal Slams England’s Safe Travel List

Sunny Portugal

Portugal is angry from England’s decision of putting it in the countries list where travelers coming will have to quarantine. The country says even though the UK has a higher death rate from coronavirus as compared to Portugal.

However, Portugal was not on the list of more than 50 countries that the government of the UK has announced to be safe for holidaymakers to visit. And when returning back travelers will not have to quarantine for 14 days.

This is a major decision for British tourists. as during the summertime, more than 2.1 million British tourists visited Portugal last year. It is the second biggest European destination for British tourists after Spain.

UK’s Decision is questionable

In a tweet, the Portuguese foreign affairs minister said that its “absurd” that Portugal is not on the new list. He also mentioned that the UK has 28 times more confirmed deaths related to coronavirus.

However, the country’s prime minister Antonio Costa, meanwhile, tweeted a graph showing that the UK had a much higher number of cases per 100,000 population than the Algarve.

Raul Martins, head of Portugal’s Hotel Association, said: “The outbreak is in peripheral Lisbon. And there are no hotels, no tourist restaurants. It has been poorly explained to the British.”

Countries Exempted From Quarantine Restriction

There are now 73 countries with exemptions from the quarantine restriction. It includes popular short-haul destinations such as Spain, France, Italy, Turkey, Greece, and Cyprus.

However, long-haul locations include Australia, Barbados, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, and Vietnam.

Countries Included in the Quarantine List

However, Portugal, China, Thailand, the Maldives, and the USA are among destinations that are not present on the no quarantine list of the UK.

Labour said the government’s failure to negotiate air bridges was “an indictment of their failure to tackle the crisis at home”.

Shadow transport secretary Jim McMahon added, “Labour, like families and businesses up and down the country, are keen for the government’s quarantine measures to be lessened, but this is a mess.”

“First we had the quarantine that they were slow to implement, then they said they’d do air bridges. Now we see a plan to let residents of 60 or more countries into England without any reciprocal arrangements.”

In addition, he said, “The fact they have been unable to negotiate air bridges is an indictment of their failure to tackle the crisis at home. They were too slow to take lockdown. Too slow to order PPE (personal protective equipment) and too slow to protect our country.”

Another List

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) released a separate list of 67 countries and territories. These countries will be exempt from its advisory against all non-essential travel from Saturday. It will make it easier for UK tourists to be covered by travel insurance while visiting.

However, the FCO included most of the places that the Department for Transport (DfT) has given. But among those missing are Fiji, Mauritius, and Seychelles.

These are some of the destinations which the FCO listed but the DfT did not. Such as Canada, Estonia, Malaysia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Singapore, and the Portuguese regions of the Azores and Madeira.

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