COVID 19 – Portuguese Government Contingency Plan

Decree Law No. 10-A / 2020

Establishes exceptional and temporary measures regarding the epidemiological situation of the new Coronavirus – COVID 19

Who will be affected?

  • All national and foreign citizens who are in Portugal and those who intend to enter in Portugal.


The ministries of Home Affairs and Health decreed a state of alert throughout the country. This decision imposed on the Portuguese exceptional measures already been announced by the Government to combat the pandemic of the new coronavirus.

This state of alert means that “the means of civil protection and the security forces and services are ready”, according to the statement released by the Council of Ministers last Friday.

There are three states in Portugal: alert, contingency and calamity.

From the moment any of these states is declared, the authorities have to implement measures of an exceptional nature, such as all measures that were announced by the Government last week.


Schools and Universities: closed from Mar 16th to Apr 9th (but it will be reviewed and may be extended)


Discos, pubs, similar: closed
Restaurants: operating reduced to 1/3 of total capacity and open until 9pm

Hotels and Local Accommodation: stay open

Shops stay open with reduced opening hours and controlled number of people
Supermarkets/Grocery stores and pharmacies stay open, but with controlled number of people

Recreation (sports, culture, folklore, religious services, museums…):

All events are about to be cancelled, public or private

Labor market: Everyone is encouraged to do teleworking where possible

Public transport: Normal timetables but is requested to be used only when needed. Free access and entrance through the rear door and without contact with the driver

Public offices in operation but with guidance for citizens to move to attend the most urgent services (Immigration office is attending prescheduled appointments and agenda for 2020 is still open for some types of appointments. Portuguese Consular offices are still open for Visa Applications).

The routine activity of the Medical and Nursing Office was also temporarily suspended, with only “acute situations” being treated, in addition to “situations suspected of acute respiratory infection”, which should be referred “immediately to the isolation areas”.

Tourists circulation across borders is under control and circulation of goods and merchandise are sustained.

Later this week, it will be decided whether a state of emergency decree is necessary, and it is strongly recommended to avoid social contact unless extremely necessary. There’s a voluntary quarantine period, authorities strongly recommend staying home, just to make it clear from the beginning the current situation. Authorities recommend all citizens should limit the most possible our displacements and our social contact.

These measures have no immediate impact on travels to Portugal but bring certainly a disrupting in daily-life in the country, for business travellers as well as current and future assignments.


  • Effective from the 16th of March

Official Information – Statistics in Portugal: you have any questions, please contact the following:

Luciana Zettel
Immigration Consultant in Portugal
Santa Fe Relocation
Tel.:  +351 938212428

To read more immigration updates, click here

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