A girl sitting on the airport , holding passport - Portugal Makes E-Gate Accessible for Britons A girl sitting on the airport , holding passport - Portugal Makes E-Gate Accessible for Britons


Portugal Makes E-Gate Accessible for Britons


Portugal has become the first country to offer an e-gate system for UK citizens. Thus it will quicken their entry into the country. This news was confirmed by Luis Araujo, President of Portugal's Tourism Board, at the World Travel and Tourism Council Summit, which took place in Filipino, Manila.

Portugal has taken this big decision, even after EU travel restrictions for Britain. It is because individual states can establish their travel policies. According to EU rules, British citizens are third-country residents regarding immigration and border checkpoints.


What Is An e-gate?

It is an electronic system to check passports. An e-gate helps read a traveller's biometric data in less than 20 minutes. Thus, it helps to authenticate the documents of passengers. It also uses facial recognition, which matches the photograph with the visitor. It means there is no need to check the passports manually. In short, it speeds up the whole process within no time.

Previously, due to Briton's third country status by the EU, their passports used to be manually checked at airports, making them wait in queues for long hours. But now, passport e-gate lanes are established for them by Portugal. However, note that travellers still will have to go through a fast passport stamping process.


At which Portugal airports Britons can use an e-gate?

UK residents can use the facility of e-gates at the following airports in Portugal.

  • Faro
  • Porto
  • Lisbon
  • Madeira



Travel Requirements for UK citizens

Britons still need to fulfil essential travel requirements, such as being vaccinated for Covid. Fully vaccinated British citizens are welcome to enter as long as they have received a booster dose if their original vaccine series is nine months old.

Moreover, suppose someone is not fully vaccinated, then a passenger must show documentation of a negative PCR test conducted no more than 72 hours before entry. Or otherwise, a lateral flow test took no more than 24 hours before arrival.


Reason For Portugal's Move

This EU country has been a hot spot for tourists. At the same time, it sees the most significant number of travellers from the UK. Alone in January and February of 2022, the country has recorded almost 480,000 hotel bookings. Also, around 2.5 million British citizens visited Portugal in 2019. Therefore, despite the travel restrictions on British nationals, this southern European country has taken this step not to lose its biggest tourist market.

Moreover, this decision is taken to compete with Greece, Italy and Spain. As summers are around the corner, all of the EU countries, particularly the mentioned ones, including Portugal, are trying hard to attract British tourists. It is because these nations are the top most demanding tourist spots. Whereas, Other than the Portuguese Republic, all other states still have a manual passport checking system for Britishers.

After the pandemic, many tourists have made plans for these countries. Portugal has taken the lead by making quick entry accessible for the Britons and thus treating them as first citizens. It's been said to cause a domino effect among all EU countries.


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