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Portugal holidays back ON

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THOUSANDS of holidaymakers breathed a sigh of relief yesterday as Portugal confirmed it will welcome Britons next week.

Airlines and tour operators saw a bookings surge after the Government placed it on the safe destination green list.

Officials in Portugal rubber-stamped the reopening of its borders to countries including the UK after days of uncertainty as the nation earlier extended its own lockdown until May 30.

They said the extension does not take tourism into account.

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A further boost came when Italy said visitors from Britain, the EU and Israel would no longer have to quarantine for five days if they test negative.

But Italy remains on the UK’s amber list, meaning visitors will quarantine for ten days and take two tests on return.

Britons can visit Portugal, the only major European green list destination, from Monday with a negative test taken in the previous 72 hours. Bookings site Skyscanner said ticket sales had risen by 633 per cent. Airline Tui is also planning to use long-haul aircraft to meet demand.