15 Essential travel tips for Portugal trip

Kanan Isazade19 October 2021912 views9 min. read
15 Essential travel tips for Portugal trip

Although marine empire ages are in the past, Portugal still keeps its beauty and historical heritage. Beautiful beaches, 16-19 century buildings, delicious cuisine, colourful culture attract millions of people to this marvellous land. Portugal is one of the top 10 most visited countries in Europe. The number of visitors was more than 22 million in 2019.

Undoubtedly, millions of people dream of visiting Portugal. If you are one of them and looking for Portugal travel tips, you are in the right place. In this blog, I will give 15 useful travel tips for Portugal.

Portugal Visa

portugal schengen visa

Before realizing your trip, you should get some information about the visa. If you are from one of the visa waiver countries, then you don't need a visa. All other nationalities must obtain a visa to travel to Portugal. In general, we can divide Portugal visa into three categories:

  • Schengen Visa

Probably, you know that Portugal is the Schengen area country. So, if you want to make a temporary visit, you should apply for a Schengen Visa, also known as a short-term visa. It allows you to stay in the country for three months for the reasons such as short education, tourism, culture, sport event, visiting family/friends, a short period of

working/education, etc. The application charge for a visa is 60 EURO, but there are some discounts for certain people and nationalities.

  • Transit Visa

It is a type of visa that allows people to wait in the international transit area. People who will not leave the international airport area don't need a transit visa. On the other hand, in some situations, you may need to leave that area. In that case, you must apply before visiting the country. During the application, you will need to pay a 60 EURO application fee.

  • Long-term visa

Regardless of your nationality, you need permission to stay in a country for a long period Portugal visa. There can be various reasons to apply for a long-stay visa, such as education, work, or family reunion. The application charge for this type of visa will be expensive than short-term. You should expect to pay something between 75-100 EURO. The price may vary depending on the nationality of the applicant.

visa application form

One of the most crucial parts of a visa application is the documentation process. Making minor mistakes in this step may cause a rejection. So, pay special attention to the documentation procedure. The list of documents may vary depending on the applied visa type:

  • Application form
  • Passport
  • Photo
  • Health insurance
  • Identity card copy
  • Residence permit
  • Copy of visa
  • Photocopies
  • Criminal clearance document
  • Financial means
  • Some documents for children

If you want to learn more information about the Portugal visa, check the services section of our website. There you will find all the relevant details.

Visit during off-season

panoramic view of lisbon at sunset

As you know the beaches of Portugal are famous worldwide. So, cities like Lisbon can be overcrowded during this time. Beach season starts in July and lasts until August. If you don't like crowded places, you can travel to Portugal in October. The average temperature is 21 degrees, and there are seven hours of sun daily. As there will be fewer people, you can enjoy your vacation.

Create your own travel route

old town ribeira

While searching for the best places to visit in Portugal, you will see the common locations. What about finding less-visited locations? I do not doubt that most of you will admire it. You can go to the north part of the country to enjoy the vineyards of Dauro. Portugal is one of the first countries that come to mind while talking about wine. So, there you will get a chance to taste some of the best examples.

Taste local food

classic portuguese food

The national cuisine of Portugal is rich in seafood. You will get a chance to taste one of the best fish and other sea meals in Portugal. Despite the high quality of cuisine, eating is inexpensive. You can have a meal for 8 EURO in a cheap restaurant. However, eating in an expensive restaurant will cost 25-35 EURO. Additionally, you should try cheese and pork.

Make your vacation affordable

lisbon city center

While travelling to a new country, we must have enough money to cover all expenses. If you want to spend less money, here are some cheap travel tips for you. First of all, stay in hostels instead of hotels. It will help you to save some money. Lunchtime will be the best option for having the main meal. Another example of cheap travel tips is related to drinking. Drinking at the counter in bars will be more affordable.

Packing tips for travel

woman packing a luggage

The correct way of packing is one of the main parts of travelling. One of the best packing tips for travel is using packing aids. They will help you to fit everything inside of baggage. Secondly, try to take clothes that can be useful in several ways. Also, if you want to spend a few weeks in Portugal, don't take the whole shampoo bottle with you.

Book in advance

booking a flight

Even if you want to visit Portugal during the off-season, booking a flight and accommodation will be better several weeks before. There are two main reasons. Firstly, as the country is attractive for tourists, the best hotels and hostels get full earlier. Secondly, booking earlier is cheaper.

Rent a car


How to travel in Portugal? If you want to visit more than one city, renting a car will be more reasonable for you. Firstly of all, it will make it easier to change the route of travel when you want. Also, you will get a chance to discover more and enjoy the scenery around the road.

Get a metro card

lisboa viva transport

How to travel in Portugal? If you want to visit Porto or Lisbon, using public transport will be the best choice. Big cities are so crowded, and you will spend a lot of time in traffic. The best way of saving time in such situations is using the metro system. Besides the metro, you can use the card for other public transports, such as trains, buses, trams, etc.

The first Sunday of the month

national coach museum

This day is so special, and it is one of the main Portugal travel tips. Visiting a new country means meeting a new culture. If you are interested in the culture and traditions of Portugal, you can go to the museums. They are free for guests on the first Sunday of the month. So, if it coincides with your travel plan, do not miss the chance.

Be attentive in the restaurant

restaurant terrace in sailing port

When you have a meal in a restaurant, you will see bread, olive and some other things on the table. You may think that they are out of charge, but it is not like that. It is one of the common mistakes that tourists make during their visit. Keep in mind that everything that is waiting for you on the table is paid for.

Important note for vegetarians

hot vegetarian salad

The next example of travel tips for Portugal that I want to mention is special for vegetarians. As I said, Portugal has delicious cuisine, but vegetarian meals are not common. Finding such a kind of meal outside of the city is almost impossible, but you can find some in big cities. You should be careful because even some vegetarian foods in restaurants include some kinds of sausage or meat. So, ask the ingredients beforehand.

Help for parking isn't free

blue car parked

This example in the top travel tips list is about parking. If you rent a car or travel by your car, you may face parking problems in certain areas and hours. During that time, some people may offer help with parking. If there is not any free place, you can accept their help. However, you should know that they will not do that for free.

Arrive earlier at the airport

humberto delgado airport

We should add this to the top travel tips list. Waiting in a queue at the airport is the worst thing about travelling. However, there are some ways of getting rid of this problem. During the high season, airports are very crowded. That is why try to come 3-4 hours before your flight. In that case, you will handle check-in and other processes without waiting for hours in the queue.

Take comfortable shoes

hiking shoes

While enjoying the vacation in charming Portugal, you will visit plenty of places and walk a lot. That is why you must wear your most comfortable shoes. You will especially need them while discovering Lisbon. The city is well-known for its hills. Furthermore, there are plenty of pearls in the countrysides. You should not miss the chance of hiking because of your shoes.

Travel budget tips

wooden letters

Finally, I would like to mention travel budget tips. Before visiting a new place, you should plan your trip. It will help you to estimate your expenses. Also, this searching will give you a chance to have a general opinion about the prices in the country. You can get such information via some websites that show living and other costs for each country.

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