One property owner told The Portugal News: “We are lucky enough to own a property in Lagos, but are not registered as Portuguese residents. We spend probably a good half a year living in our home in Lagos sometimes for five weeks at a time, together with regular short holidays throughout a year.

“We are troubled to learn that if there is no UK-Portugal agreement, as Non-Portuguese resident UK Nationals, we could be faced with our stays severely curtailed by the 90/180 days Rule, as we would be limited to visiting Lagos for up to 90-days within any 180-day period (3 months in Portugal and 3 months in the UK) before the 180 day clock is reset.

“We read everywhere about the special alliance between our two countries and it would be a travesty if this is lost. Undoubtedly, this rule would lead to a lot less revenue being brought into the Algarve.”

The official UK Government statement on the situation reads: “From 1 January 2021, you will be able to travel to other Schengen area countries for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa for purposes such as tourism. This is a rolling 180-day period. To stay for longer, to work or study, or for business travel, you will need to meet the entry requirements set out by the country to which you are travelling.

“This could mean applying for a visa or work permit. You may also need to get a visa if your visit would take you over the 90 days in 180 days limit. Periods of stay authorised under a visa or permit will not count against the 90-day limit. Travel to the UK and Ireland will not change.”

A spokesman from the British Embassy in Lisbon told The Portugal News: “We would like to highlight that the UK government launched in mid September an information campaign to help UK nationals prepare for EU travel changes after the end of the transition. This information has been available online on since 18 September, and therefore in the public domain.

“From 1 January 2021 onwards, UK nationals will only be able to travel visa-free for short stays, such as for tourism or to visit friends or family, for up to 90 days in a rolling 180-day period. This is the standard length of stay that the EU offers to nationals of eligible third countries that offer visa-free travel for EU citizens, in line with existing EU legislation.

“In addition, the Portugal travel advice page on the UK government website has been updated for some time to include information on the 90/180 day rule under the section on entry requirements: To note that travellers can sign up for email alerts to ensure they stay on top of the latest.”