British expats concern over post Brexit visas to Portugal

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 04-12-2020 01:00:00 · 18 Comments

Rules regarding travel to Europe post Brexit have left property owners and visitors concerned about being able to visit Portugal without needing a visa.

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.”

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What a lot of moaning people, who want to stay in Portugal as they have a house there, what are they moaning about they can still live there for 90 days at a time then go home for 90 days then come back, simple, and if your not happy with that then apply for a retirement visa and move there, then you can spend 365 days of the year there, it’s not a life and death situation you are in, get a grip for gods sake

By Alan from Other on 11-03-2021 07:49

I am a Brit and my wife is a dual Brazilian/Brit national. We have had a flat and garage in Lagos for 18 years and regard Portugal as our home. Following Consular advice, we registered as residents and hold all the right paperwork, including having our UK driving licences recognised. The only problem I see is that due to COVID we have not been able to travel from UK to our flat in 2020 and our residence permits have therefore expired, as they had a 6 month validity. Our Financas contributions are paid on direct debit, therefore up to date. Next time, on arrival, we will go to the Camara in Lagos and ask to refresh our expired residency. That may exclude us from the 90/180 day rule. The Portuguese are eminently sensible and will have a protocol in place to accommodate these type of issues. Sit tight, watch the news and to quote Corporal Jones, Don't Panic.

By Mike Hallums from UK on 31-12-2020 05:53

So much ignorance herw. 1) We are far far far from all Brexiters and all of the property owners we know are anti Brexit and anti this UK corrupt government.2) It's wrong to assume we can all jst take Portuguese residency. That's plain ignorance. None of you know individuals personal situations. Sounds like a lot of jealousy here. UP the EU.

By Christopher David from UK on 08-12-2020 03:04

I get why UK nationals are receiving zero sympathy. As a nation we deserve it, but don’t lose sight of the fact that it was far from a ‘landslide’ vote for BREXIT so please do not generalise and assume that all Brits want to leave the EU - Far from it, millions of us are angrier than ever before that our so called Government have lied and cheated their way through the last 4 years. We want to remain part of the EU and welcome our friends an neighbours from all over the world.

By Al_P from UK on 08-12-2020 09:31

I can’t really find it in myself to get terribly upset for the people mentioned here. If they are retired them can still spend six months here in a year, just not continuously. I guess they will also have to find health insurance, but apart from that, it isn’t a huge inconvenience, what did they think not being in the EU meant?

By Nikki from Algarve on 07-12-2020 04:37

You asked for it and now you have it, problem?

By Jason from Algarve on 07-12-2020 02:46

What's the problem here? They can easily register as Portuguese residents, then the 90/180 rule doesn't apply. This isn't even a story.

By Fis from Lisbon on 05-12-2020 03:55

Oh didiums, how many of these people voted for Brexit? How many thought being British gave you James Bond status were the rules don't apply , the country voted for it and and you had your chance to vote out the government who was hell bent on it, so you have only yourself to blame, and now you are left with a Blue passport that is as useful as a chocolate tea pot.

By Paul Docherty from Algarve on 05-12-2020 02:23

The British people have known for a long enough what is going to happen on the 1st of January so why is it so difficult to either get a visa or apply for residency. Why should the British receive special treatment

By Chris Clay from Other on 05-12-2020 01:19

Well...the majority of British voters wanted Brexit wasn't it? So, welcome to Brexit.

By Pedro from Lisbon on 05-12-2020 03:46

Sorry i have now lived in Portugal for nearly 2 years. Follow the rules of the country YOU want to usperp. We are NOT colonialist any more. You cannot simply rock up in Portugal not register or read and observe the rules on you stay or make such right wing British commenys3

By Angela from Other on 04-12-2020 06:24

The problem is that the 180/90 day ruling is you visit Portugal on the first of say April and stay 90 days it means you cannot return until October. So you are banned as in my case visiting my property for which I own with my Portuguese car, bank account with funds supplied from the UK, private health and legal representative. When you arrive in Portugal you could be asked personal questions if you can support your self. I have been visiting Portugal for sixteen years and invested like many others in the structure. If the 90 day period which as it works out 180 days per 360 days you may visit as we are called now tourists was during a calendar year with a simple to control basic Visa system.

By Colin Dunford from Algarve on 04-12-2020 04:06

Procrastinators will pay the price. Wise people have done the research and planned ahead.

By William from Other on 04-12-2020 03:00

Cry me a river... what did you think Brexit would mean? As someone who needs to pay for a transit visa to fly through Heathrow without setting foot in the UK I have zero sympathy for this sort of whining

By Tim from Lisbon on 04-12-2020 01:45

It's almost like leaving the EU has consequences...

By Rasmus Toft Ilsoe from Other on 04-12-2020 01:39

What's the problem about needing a visa to come to Portugal or the EU? Has it ever been a problem needing a visa to go to the USA or to Australia? Come on, stop the crying.

By John Dough from Lisbon on 04-12-2020 08:17

Expats are people who live/work permanently in a country other than their native country. People who own properties in Portugal but live permanently elsewhere are not expats, neither are those who come to Portugal for holidays, long or short. From 1 January 2021 the entry and length of stays of UK visitors in Portugal will be subject to immigration laws, as specified in the article. Brexit is here.

By Annie from Algarve on 04-12-2020 08:13

One property owner told The Portugal News:

.... Why can't we have our cake and eat it?
It's my bat and ball.
If we kick homeless non registered out of UK legally from Tuesday, why can't we live in Portugal for an endless period.
Cheap good quality food, low crime, warmer climate, less people, historical & cultural excess, low wages to hire more people to carry bat and ball.
We demand more, we are British. "

Love a British Passport Holder

By Steve walkee from Other on 04-12-2020 05:45
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