4 min read
The Brexit deadline is just around the corner and, with a no-deal outcome still on the table, there are quite a few questions about how travel plans may be affected. While many things are still undecided, we share some info and advice to help get you in the know.
With a no-Deal Brexit, the UK will be given “third country” status by EU countries. This means that UK passport holders will longer have the privileges that come with the freedom of movement rules that allow EU citizens to travel easily between countries. For now, the EU’s legislative body ensures that Brits won’t require visas to enter EU countries. But, after 2021 they will need to head online and pay €7 for the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS). This lasts for three years and helps to ease the entry process at EU airport border control. Additionally, the UK government recommends that British passport holders have at least six months' validity left on their passport when entering the EU, so be sure to check that yours meets this criterion when you start planning your trip.
One of the biggest questions a lot of travellers have revolved around how their flights will be impacted. For now, the EU has agreed to allow “basic connectivity” for a year which prevents planes from being grounded the day after a no-deal Brexit. So, flights from the UK to the EU should be good to go. But, the rules around UK-owned airlines wishing to fly between two EU destinations are still up in the air (pun intended). The EU has also announced that a no-deal Brexit would mean airlines would have to cap flights at 2018 levels, so there is still a risk that new flights, which some tickets have already been sold for, could be cancelled.
If there’s anything to take particular note of, it’s that a no-Deal Brexit may have a significant impact on UK citizens access to healthcare. So far, Brits have been able to receive reduced-cost emergency medical treatment with the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), but after October 31st this may no longer be valid. To address this, British travellers should be sure to closely inspect the fine print when purchasing travel insurance to ensure that they are covered for any procedures or treatments that they may potentially need.
Once touching down in their EU destination, UK passport holders can expect to face a few delays when heading through border control. With their new “third country” status, they will no longer be able to speed through EU citizen lanes. It’s predicted that the border control process will take additional 90-seconds more time per passenger, but don’t fret, both the UK and the EU promise that they are hiring extra staff to deal with this.
Since 2017, UK travellers have been enjoying the privilege of updating their Instagram story, checking-in on Facebook and texting mum to let her know that they’ve landed okay at no additional cost to their standard plan. But, with a no-deal Brexit, there is a risk that the ban on roaming charges for EU networks would no longer apply to UK travellers who may, once again, be charged to access data, send text messages and make calls when travelling throughout the European Union.
Since the result of the referendum, the strength of the pound has taken a hell of a hit and with the announcement of a no-deal Brexit, its value is expected to weaken even further. This means that UK travellers will have to fork out more than they would previously during their trips in eurozone countries. On the flip-side, those travelling into the UK will be treated to a great rate of exchange - the perfect excuse to splurge on all the tea, digestives and scones GBP can buy.