According to a report by The Telegraph, Portugal has become the first country in the EU to no longer treat travellers from Briton as “third country” visitors, allowing them to pass through special e-gates and thus avoiding delays due to manual checks.
Luis Araujo, the president of Turismo de Portugal, told The Telegraph that opening the e-gates would “provide increased accessibility for our valued British travellers, as we head into the busy summer period”.
He added: “We’re delighted to have made travel to Portugal even more seamless for those able to make the most of the new e-gates.”
Paul Charles, the chief executive of the PC Agency, a travel consultancy, said: “Portugal is clearly leading the way in recognising that they have to process vast numbers of British visitors as seamlessly as possible otherwise there would be long queues this summer.
“So it’s a clever way of differentiating themselves from other countries who are not processing in the same way. I think you will see other EU countries follow this approach otherwise British travellers will face long delays going into France, Spain, Greece, Italy and other countries.”
New Covid-19 regulations in Portugal now mean that masks are no longer required inside, except for in hospitals, care homes and on public transport (including taxis and aeroplanes).
Passenger locator forms have also been scrapped for travellers.