Turkey & Portugal Open Up for Summer

With travel having been seriously restricted over the past twelve months, news that countries are starting to open up to tourists both with and without the need for a Covid vaccine passport is undoubtedly welcome to many. 

We look at how you can potentially travel to Turkey and Portugal in the summer of 2021. 

Turkey

Turkey is prepared to accept UK travellers this summer as soon as the Covid-19 restrictions allow travel, which means that the border is likely to be open for those visiting from England from  17th May. 

No vaccine certificate will be required. The current PCR test proof for British citizens to enter Turkey will be reviewed on April 15th. Tourism Minister Mehmet Ersoy said the country would also be unlikely to require a negative Covid test from UK travellers.

He added that the country is “looking forward to welcoming British tourists with open arms.”

Turkey itself has seen a successful vaccine roll-out, with 10 million locals jabbed.

And from today, people who work at hotels and tourism facilities have been given priority for the jab.

The nation is keen to make sure its people are safely vaccinated when British tourists arrive in the early summer.

Portugal

Portugal, one of the five most popular summer destinations for UK travellers,  was removed from the “red list.” 

Speaking to the BBC, Rita Marques, said “I do believe that Portugal will soon allow restriction-free travel, not only for vaccinated people but those who are immune or who test negative. We hope to welcome British tourists from 17 May.”

She added that Portugal’s situation was “stable” and said, “Everything will be ready by mid-May.”

As it stands, it appears that Uk travellers will not need a  “vaccine passport” – proof that a traveller has received both doses of an approved vaccine to enter Portugal. 

Portugal’s tourism minister said entry should be permitted “not only for vaccinated people but those who are immune or who test negative”.

Vaccinated travellers may be permitted entry without the need to take a Covid test beforehand. In contrast, unvaccinated tourists will likely still need to present a negative PCR result from a test taken within 72 hours of departure.

Following the announcement about Portugal coming off the red list, João Fernandes, president of Algarve Tourism Bureau, said: “We are delighted with the decision to take Portugal off the red list. We have been able to overcome a second wave of coronavirus to reduce the infections levels to some of the lowest in Europe.

“The Algarve has always been a favourite holiday destination with British holidaymakers, and this announcement is a hopeful sign that we will soon be able to welcome them back in early summer.

The Algarve offers so much as a holiday destination, and last year we were distinguished as the best beach and best golf destination in the world. We can’t wait to welcome back British visitors and share our beautiful region with them once more.”

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