Sunday, 17 April 2011

Re: EuropCar Emergency Asst Left Me Alone and Stranded

I would have thought a call to 112, (They have English speakers) the Portuguese national emergency number would have at least brought a local police officer to the scene who would have been able to help you.

As regards mobile phones, just make sure with your Stateside operator before you leave, that your sim card and mobile phone work in Europe. These day, if one has a quadband phone equipped with a suitable sim card there should be no problem.

I have difficulty understanding the constant problems North Americans seem to have with mobile phones when traveling internationally. I have used my basic Portuguese mobile phone all over Europe, in South Africa, in Hong Kong without any problem. Sounds like US based mobile operators are not nearly as customer friendly as ours over here.

As regards the reaction of the Portuguese shop staff and security, I find this story strange. I am sure if you had said you were not feeling well, they would have called 112 for you. I have known Portugal for 40 years and generally, the Portuguese are very helpful if someone is in need. They may not appear so to one's face but they are.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Portuguese Motorways - Electronic tolls - Latest

There was an announcement to night that the tolls will not be introduced on April 15th as planned as the caretaker government here in Portugal does not have the full legal status to implement them.
See: (in Portuguese)

It will probably be at least another two months before they are introduced.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Portuguese Motorways - Electronic tolls - Latest

Latest this evening! SIC TV News reports that despite the roads authority "Estradas de Portugal" being €2bn in the red and banks refusing further credit, it is highly likely that implementation of electronic tolls will be delayed from 15 April 2011 until after the elections in June.

Reason given is that the current caretaker govt. does not have the legal power to proceed.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Portuguese Motorways - Electronic tolls - Latest

A news flash on the RTP (Portuguese TV) web site today reports that a regulation has been published in today's Diario da Republica (Govt. Gazette) providing for the implementation of a pre-payment voucher costing € 20.00 and allowing circulation for unlimited mileage on motorways with electronic tolls for a period of three days.

Report here in portuguese:

As soon as the modalities of acquiring one of these pre-paid cards is clear will post more info.