Government Brexit Advice
Published on Wednesday, February 20, 2019
Question: What is the UNITED KINGDOM GOVERNMENT BREXIT ADVICE?
Answer: The UNITED KINGDOM GOVERNMENT BREXIT ADVICE is as follows:
The rules for travel to most countries in Europe will change if the UK leaves the European Union (EU) with no deal.
The government has increased planning for a no deal EU Exit and is asking citizens to make sure they are also prepared.
UK passport holders should therefore check their passport to see whether it is valid for travel after 29 March 2019.
After the 29th March 2019 UK citizens should have six months left on their UK passport from the day of arrival, applicable to adult and child passports. If a passport had been renewed before its expiry date, extra months may have been added to the new passports expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the 6 months that should be remaining for travel to most countries in Europe. The new rules will apply to passports issued by the UK, Gibraltar, Guernsey, the Isle of Man and Jersey.Currently, UK passport holders can travel to all EU countries as long as they have enough remaining validity to cover the length of their stay, so it’s important to be aware of the above changes in a ‘no deal’ Brexit.
YOUR BREXIT QUESTIONS ANSWERED
We understand just how confusing everything surrounding Brexit has become. We’ve put together some information to answer all the questions you might have on how Brexit will affect your holiday.
Here are just a few things to help put your mind at rest and prepare you for the road ahead, whatever happens in the coming months.
Question: WILL MY PASSPORT BE VALID?
Answer: In the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal, new rules will apply, meaning you’ll need to check your passport ahead of time.
The UK government recommends that travellers going to the EU after 29 March 2019 have six months left on their passport, and is also advising that any extra months which have been added to a 10 year passport will not be valid.
Not sure if this affects you? There’s a handy online passport checker you can fill in.
You can renew your passport online or by going to a Post Office with a Check and Send service. We’d recommend you don’t leave this to the last minute!
Question: DO I NEED A VISA?
Answer: It’s highly unlikely you’ll need a visa to travel to the EU after Brexit. The European Commission confirmed that, even after a no-deal exit, UK travellers can still visit the EU without a visa, providing the same is offered to European citizens visiting the UK. The European Commission has said that from 2021, after the transition period (if we leave with a deal) UK citizens will need to pay a fee of around 7 Euros for this visa exemption, similar to the US ESTA arrangement.
Question: HOW WILL IT AFFECT THE CHANNEL TUNNEL?
The Channel Tunnel will definitely be open after Brexit, and Eurotunnel will be operating as normal whatever form Brexit takes.
It is protected by The Treaty of Canterbury which was signed by France and the UK when the Channel Tunnel was conceived – this sets out that both countries will facilitate as frictionless travel as possible through the Tunnel up until 2086.
There has been a recent story in the press about The European Commission providing authorisation for the Tunnel to continue to operate as it does now for 90 days after Brexit in the case of a “no deal”. This is just because agreed safety and operating licences can’t be signed between the UK and the EU unless the UK actually is a “third party” at the moment of signing.
The 90 days means that these agreements will be physically signed after the 29th of March, without the service being affected in any way.
Question: HOW WILL IT AFFECT FERRIES?
Answer: Brexit will not affect the ability of ferries to sail between the UK and the rest of Europe. The Government has also set out that it wants to make no changes to passport controls for travel between the UK and the Continent. It’s worth noting, however, that ports are always busier during the holiday season and we recommend that you arrive in plenty of time for your sailing. It’s always a good idea to check with your ferry operator to assess whether delays will be likely.
Question: WILL FLIGHTS BE AFFECTED?
Answer: Whatever happens after 29 March 2019 when the UK is scheduled to leave the European Union, the EU Commission has confirmed that UK airlines will still be able to operate flights between the UK and the EU.
If a deal is agreed then we will be in a transition period, meaning everything will stay the same until the end of December 2020 and flights will continue as normal. And even if there is no deal, the EU has confirmed that flights will not be affected.
Question: CAN I USE MY DRIVING LICENCE?
Answer: Following a no-deal exit, UK travellers with a full UK driving licence looking to drive in the EU on or after 29 March 2019 may need to get an International Driving Permit (IDP). Check which permits you’ll need for each country, if you’re driving through a few countries, eg, driving through France and Spain you will require the 1949 IDP and the 1968 IDP. They cost £5.50 and larger Post Office branches will start selling them from 1st February.
Question: WILL I NEED A GREEN CARD?
Answer: A no-deal exit would leave drivers needing to have proof of insurance known as a Green Card. Although European insurance authorities agreed to waive the need for Green Cards in the event of a no-deal Brexit in May 2018, it has not been confirmed by the European Commission. A Green Card is free and is obtained by contacting your vehicle insurance provider.
Question: DO I NEED TRAVEL INSURANCE?
Answer: ABTA advises holidaymakers to make sure they have appropriate travel insurance, even with a valid EHIC card. But, following a no-deal exit, this advice is essential. We’d always recommend you check any insurance covers your current medical conditions and any previous medical history is clearly noted. If you have an annual policy, make sure you check the Terms and Conditions and contact your insurance provider if you need to make any updates.
Question: WILL MY EHIC BE ACCEPTED?
Answer: The one area that will significantly alter, should we have a no-deal exit, is our reciprocal health arrangements with Europe. The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) allows EU citizens to receive state medical care when they are within the EU. In the event of a no-deal Brexit, UK registered EHICs will no longer be valid, so you won’t be able to rely on this, should you suffer an injury or illness when you’re away.
If a deal is agreed, there will be a transition period between 29 March 2019 and 31 December 2020, during which time all EU law will continue to apply in the UK. That would mean you’ll still be able to use your card.
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