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It feels as if Europe's hoped-for summer reopening is coming apart one country at a time as Covid-19 variants gain traction and some citizens forgo vaccinations.

Passengers arriving in Portugal from Britain must quarantine for 14 days from Monday if they are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the Portuguese government said.

The new rule will remain in place until at least July 11. It follows a surge in cases in Portugal to levels seen in February, when it was under a strict lockdown.

Daily positive cases have also risen in Britain but the vaccination roll-out has been faster there, and a much higher proportion of adult Britons have received a first dose.

Britons arriving by air, land or sea must show proof they are fully vaccinated or self isolate for 14 days at “home or at a place indicated by health authorities,” the government said in a statement late on Sunday.

A person is considered fully vaccinated in Portugal 14 days after their second of two vaccinations or the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine. Passengers from Britain who have recovered from COVID-19 and received one dose will also be allowed in.

Britain is one of Portugal’s biggest sources of foreign tourists but removed Portugal from its quarantine-free travel list this month. Germany declared Portugal a “virus-variant zone” last week, a measure that will further disrupt travel.

Portugal is on Britain’s amber list, meaning holidaymakers must self-isolate for 10 days when they return home and take expensive COVID-19 tests.

Portuguese health authorities have blamed the rise in infections on the more contagious Delta variant, first identified in India but spreading in Portugal and Britain.

It accounts for over 70% of cases in the Lisbon area and is spreading to other parts of the country, which has the EU’s highest seven-day rolling average of cases per capita, according to online publication Our World in Data.

Portugal opened borders to British tourists in mid-May and thousands of English soccer fans arrived for the Champions League final last month.

(Reporting by Catarina Demony; Additional reporting by Philip Blenkinsop; Editing by Kirsten Donovan and Timothy Heritage)

This article was written by Catarina Demony from Reuters and was legally licensed through the Industry Dive publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.

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Tags: coronavirus, portugal

Photo Credit: A beach in the Algarve region of Portugal. The country imposed new restrictions on some UK travelers. Christiano Pinto / Unsplash

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