Published on : Tuesday, October 6, 2020
The golfers from Scotland finally got the news they have been waiting for after its government announced that the award-winning islands of Madeira and Porto Santo are now exempt from travel restrictions, meaning travellers will no longer need to self-isolate for 14 days upon their return.
Scotland follows in the footsteps of England and Wales which both kept Madeira and Porto Santo on their lists of safe travel corridors because of their low number of cases, even after mainland Portugal was removed on September 10. The holidaymakers from Scotland were advised against all non-essential travel to both islands with a mandatory quarantine imposed, but the stunning golfing hotspot, which is home to three magnificent golf courses, has now been declared exempt from quarantine requirements and deemed safe by the Scottish authorities.
The islands were last year hailed as the ‘world’s best emerging golf destination’ at the World Golf Awards, and as Europe’s ‘leading island destination’ for the fourth successive year, as well as the world’s ‘leading island destination’ for a staggering fifth year running in the 2019 World Travel Awards – meaning the decision will be welcome news to golfers, who can now escape the British weather this winter and enjoy their annual golfing holiday at some of the best golf courses in the world, without needing to stay at home for two weeks when they return.
Madeira and Porto Santo are fully prepared for Scottish travellers after they began welcoming back international visitors safely from July 1, but there are strict rules in place for everyone flying into Madeira Airport.
Prior to arrival, all passengers must complete the Regional Health Authority’s (IASAÚDE) epidemiological survey and will need to submit a negative Covid-19 test within 72 hours of departure, although, if they have not performed a test in advance, they will be required to take one upon arrival at the airport – with costs covered by the local authorities.
Incoming visitors will also be subject to thermal screening, even if they carry a negative test for Covid-19.
Discover Madeira, the consumer-facing brand of the Madeira Promotion Bureau, has been working with the local and Portuguese authorities to put plans in place for holidaymakers to visit safely, with the “Madeira Safe to Discover” guidelines being stringently followed across the islands to control and prevent the spread of Coronavirus and other possible infections.
Hotels, restaurants, bars, golf clubs and other tourist activities across the islands are also adopting the “Clean and Safe” stamp, created by VisitPortugal, which distinguishes tourist activities which are compliant with certain hygiene and cleaning requirements.
Madeira’s three golf courses include two on the mainland – Santo da Serra and Palheiro Golf, as well as Porto Santo Golf, which is located on the nearby island of Porto Santo.