Tolls = Financial Lunacy

Dear Editor,

We love Portugal and its people, in particular the laid-back lifestyle, so much so that our son bought a house in Luz. We were delighted when the A22 reached Lagos and the EN125 could be avoided.

We assumed the A22 was built with EU money as the EN125 was no longer fit for purpose.

Our first realisation of the new road tolls were the blue boards at the roadside on the A22, however, there is absolutely no instruction on how to pay for the roads and we had to ask locally.

We joined the Post Office queue on three separate occasions to pay our dues, waiting far too long each time.

Being law abiding, fair minded people, we are appalled to learn that there is no way to pay on returning the rental car to Faro Airport. Presumably this makes criminals of all who depart via the A22.

Who, but who, in the Portuguese Government sanctioned such a half baked scheme?

We hear Spanish tourists now avoid the Algarve as, no doubt, will potential weekend or short term visitors.

The loss of tourist income in such difficult economic times is financial lunacy. The galling reality is that the whole scheme will not survive the first summer season when the northern Portuguese descend into the Algarve.

Personally, on this trip, we have not used the A22 to explore the Algarve as previously. We have only carried out airport runs for friends.

If others are like-minded, many visitors will remain mainly in their holiday location, which will be detrimental to other areas.

The payment regime for the tolls is ridiculous and completely destroys the relaxation of an Algarvean holiday.

If the tolls must remain, either toll booths or pre-payment vouchers need to be introduced. The old saying of “biting the hand that feeds you” springs to mind.

DEREK DRYBURGH – regular visitor

Praia da Luz