Airport arrivals halls in Lisbon, Faro and Porto closed due to new restrictions

This is the headline in Diário de Notícias this afternoon following a joint press conference called to present new restrictions coming in at all Portugal’s main airports.

Rui Alves, director of Lisbon’s Humberto Delgado terminal, explained that people should “only travel to the airport in case of absolute necessity, as the arrivals area will be closed due to new rules of inspection”.

He admitted that people who do travel to airports “won’t have the best conditions in which to wait…”

The conference, at Lisbon airport, involved PSP police, SEF borders agency, the DGS health authority, the civil aviation authority and ANA – the company in charge of Portugal’s airports.

The new restrictions only apply until January 9, 2022 (whereas the State of Calamity has been scheduled to run until March 20).

From midnight tonight, all passengers arriving in Portugal on international flights – independent of possessing a vaccination certificate – will be obliged to present a negative diagnostic test (PCR or antigen) taken the requisite number of days previously (PCR, 72 hours; antigen, 48 hours).

“Travellers with a certificate of recovery from Covid-19, which is valid for six months, will not be required to present a negative test”, explains DN.

Pedro Pinho, director of airport security at the Metropolitan Command of Lisbon PSP, reiterated that people will  “feel constraints” if they travel to an airport to meet a loved one/ guest or business colleague.

He said the best option was to wait for the passenger/s in the carpark…

The ‘discovery’ of a new variant in South Africa appears to be behind this raft of new measures, although it has been established that the variant was present in Europe before it was identified in South Africa. (Reuters and other news sources broke this news late morning click here).

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com