Madeira, a destination that has long enjoyed an excellent relationship with the UK, with the first British settlement dating back to 16th century, is amongst the first overseas destinations on the UK’s Green List announced on 7th May, with leisure travel permitted again from 17th May 2021.
Only a 3.5 hour direct flight from the UK, Madeira is served by a number of airlines. It is said that British Airways, Easyjet, TUI and Wizz air aim to restart already after 17th May. Jet2 Holidays has pushed back the start date for all flights and holidays to 24th June. There are numerous policies in place to make travel as straight forward for visitors as possible, whilst focusing on the safety for all, this subtropical and lush Atlantic island with some of Europe’s most beautiful scenery and year-round warmth, is bound to be a top destination for the rest of 2021 and beyond.
Madeira was referred to as the most enviable island on earth by author H.N. Coleridge in the 19th Century – ‘it ensures every European comfort with almost every tropical luxury’ – and with the destination winning numerous awards, such as Europe’s Leading Island Destination (World Travel Awards) seven times, it is clear that this view continues to this day.
The green corridor already existed at Madeira airport for those who arrive with a negative PCR test done within 72 hours. Alternatively, visitors can take a free test at the airport on arrival. One free PCR test per visitor is offered, to be taken on arrival or departure, with results in 24 hours. There are also discounts on offer for any further tests required, with PCR tests from €90 and antigen tests from €18.
Now Madeira is also receiving tourists vaccinated and recovered from Covid-19 (with proof up to 90 days of validity) who want to enjoy the region, with testing for these cohorts no longer required.
Covid-19 cases in Madeira have decreased significantly in recent months, with an average of 32 new cases in the last 7 days. 27.1% of the population has received their first dose of the vaccine and 8.8% have received both doses. Tourism professionals will be vaccinated by the end of May.
Curfew hours in Madeira have now been reduced and are from 11pm until 5am. Restaurants will be open for dinner until 10pm.
Madeira has worked closely with SGS, the world’s leading certification company to ensure safe practice across the destination and minimise risk in regard to Covid-19. The certification process is available to all companies in the tourism sector.
Nuno Vale, Director of Madeira Promotion Bureau said of the UK announcement: "We are ecstatic and beyond amazed with the good news. This will be absolutely crucial for all our UK partners and tourism sector overall. Most importantly, our local members, hotels, leisure and incoming companies will finally restart their activity, welcoming British tourists as usual, who we believe are very keen on travelling right now."