The supply of Public Utilities in Portugal have improved considerably over the past few years. Nevertheless, they may not always run as efficiently as what you are used to. Only a small area of Lisbon is served by a natural gas distribution network. At present bottled butane gas is widely available as an alternative, and is commonly used for domestic cooking, heating water and heating the home.
Various private companies supply bottled gas, as do many small general stores. Gas bottles of 13 kilos are normally used in individual homes. A bottle of this size will last an average family approximately one week.
Most modern apartment complexes have a central reserve of large gas bottles from which gas is piped to the individual homes. Always find out who the delivering agent is in case you should need to contact them.
EDP (Energias de Portugal) provides electricity for mainland Portugal. There are varying tariffs available depending upon the level of use a property may need. The local current is 220 AC and the connection is made by a two-pin plug.
Travellers from the USA will require a voltage converter. Travellers from the UK will require a plug adapter and this is best bought in the UK as they are hard to find in Lisbon.
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Most rural properties will either have a borehole (furo) or a well (poço). Tap water is generally safe to drink in most parts of Portugal. The water is metered and each household is billed according to usage.
In the Lisbon area the water supply is adequate although shortages do occur in high summer and may result in water cuts lasting up to a few hours.
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