BRITISH holidaymakers in Portugal have been told they can take off their face masks indoors.
It is scheduled to go into effect at midnight on Friday.
Portugal has also said it is ending the requirement to fill out personal locator forms for people traveling to the country.
The easing of face mask rules follows a similar move by Spain.
British tourists arriving in Spain could remove their face coverings for the the first time in almost two years in virtually all indoor locations, including shops and hotels, since Wednesday.
Face coverings are still required to be worn in hospitals and public transport in both Spain and Portugal.
The country’s health minister, Marta Temido, announced the move today after it was approved at a cabinet meeting.
She said: “We are changing the framework because we understand that the circumstances surrounding the pandemic have changed.
“The protection that vaccination and booster shots offer is known to be very high, new medicines for serious diseases are becoming available, we have more knowledge of the disease and we have a favorable international situation.
“The summer months are also traditionally less favorable for transmission of respiratory viruses.”
The use of face masks in both countries where areas like the Costa Blanca in Spain and the Algarve in Portugal are very popular with British tourists, were the most visible sign of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mandatory use of face coverings outdoors in Spain was only lifted in February after restrictions were reinstated around Christmas.
Some experts have said they would have preferred face masks to remain mandatory indoors in all public spaces until after the summer.
There has been a mixed reaction to the lifting of indoor face covering rules in Spain, with most tourists using them in hotels and shops, but many locals continuing to use them in places like supermarkets even though they don’t have to.
https://www.thesun.ie/travel/8686260/portugal-face-mask-rules-summer-holidays/ Portugal is scrapping face masks in time for the summer holidays