Canada Association of Tourism Employees

Brits make mad sprint house from Portugal to beat new quarantine guidelines deadline

British tourists dubbed the scenes at the airport “absolute carnage” – claiming check-in took over two hours – and blamed British government ministers for creating the situation.

  • Portugal was included in Britain’s “Amber List”
  • British vacationers rush home before new quarantine rules go into effect
  • Britons flooded the airport to take flights that would enter the UK before the new rules went into effect

The UK government announced last week that Portugal was added to the UK’s “amber list” requiring those entering the UK from “amber” countries to spend 10 days in quarantine at home. Before this change, Portugal was on the “green list”, which does not require the British to be quarantined after their return from Portugal.

Huge queues formed at Portugal’s Faro Airport over the weekend as British tourists rushed home from their Portuguese vacations before Britain’s new mandatory quarantine rules came into effect for those returning from the country.

British vacationers flocked to the airport to catch flights that would enter the UK before the new rules go into effect on Tuesday, June 8th at 4am.

Photos posted on social media in the past few days showed Faro Airport – the main airport in Portugal’s Algarve, previously listed as the British most popular European tourist destination – full of crowds and huge queues.

Tourists reported the “total chaos” as thousands of Britons tried to get the required COVID-19 tests before departure, with some people checking in minutes before their flights departed.

According to reports, 10,000 Brits attempted to leave Portugal from Faro Airport on Saturday alone.

The British government also put several countries on its “red list” on Thursday, including Costa Rica, Egypt, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Bahrain and Trinidad and Tobago. Brits returning to the UK from a “Red List” country will have to spend 10 days in a designated quarantine hotel, which costs £ 1,750.

Many of the countries on the UK’s narrow “green list” – such as Australia and New Zealand – currently do not allow the British to travel for leisure.

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