Winter stays

I read with interest that Portugal feels it is well placed to recover from the loss of trade and restrictions that the pandemic has induced to us all. I really do hope that is the case.

I am recently retired and joined the other snowbirds from the UK in October 2020 and spent a wonderful winter in the Algarve, returning to a very cold bleak UK at the end of March.

Hopefully that was going to be the status quo for the foreseeable future. 

However, the 90 in 180-day rule now seems to have put an end to that idea.

Unless I am mistaken, the above rule was in force way before Brexit, however, as I understand it, the rule was never enforced.

But now it is. So, what is the difference? The UK was never a part of the Schengen region, so why was the ruling not enforced, but now it is?

That aside, does the EU/Schengen region not realise that, as a consequence of this latest rule enforcement, those Brits that would normally winter in Spain or Portugal for six months, me included, can now only come for three months, or even not bother at all. Resulting at best case scenario in a winter reduction in trade of 50% or greater.

The areas trying their hardest to recover from the dramatic effects of Covid are now facing a politically-induced shortage of winter business. 

If anyone has any other views on this, please enlighten me, as I have researched quite intensely, and I can’t find any answers.

Steve Raines