How does Brexit affect my holiday?
On the 1st January 2021, Britain left the European Union, which means things will be a little different when travelling on holiday to Europe.
For your holiday to the EU, you will now need to check the five steps below:
1. Check to see if your passport will still be valid?
If you have a British passport and are planning to travel to an EU country (execept Ireland), or Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City, you must meet the Schengen area rules.
Your passport must meet 2 requirements. It must be:
- less than 10 years old on the day you enter (check the 'date of issue')
- valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check the 'expiry date')
You can use the Government’s passport checker to see if you need to renew your passport.
2. Ensure you have travel insurance with adequate healthcare cover
We always advise travellers to take out comprehensive travel insurance with sufficient healthcare cover for your individual requirements.
If you have a European Health Insurance Card it will be valid up to its expiry date. If you apply for a card now, you'll get a new UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) instead of an EHIC. More details here.
3. Make sure you have all the correct documents you need to drive in Europe
A UK driving licence will be valid in the EU and you will not need to obtain an International Driving Permit, except in some instances where you are only in possession of a paper licence or your driving licence was issued in Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey or the Isle of Man. For more information, visit www.gov.uk/guidance/driving-in-the-eu.
4. Check your mobile phone company's policy on data roaming?
Rules around mobile data roaming are changing meaning you may face charges when using your phone abroad, including for making calls, sending messages or using the internet. Check with your mobile phone provider about their data roaming policy.
5. Taking pets abroad?
Your pet passport will no longer be valid, instead you will need an Animal Health Certificate and your pet will need to be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies. If you wish to take your pet abroad, you should speak to your vet in advance to make sure you have these in place before you are due to travel.
Other things to be aware of when travelling to Europe
- If you are going on holiday you won't need a visa for short trips to Europe.
- At border control you may need to show a return ticket and that you have enough money for your stay.
- When going through passport control you may not be able to use the EU or EEA lanes.
- You won't be able to take any meat, milk or products containing these items into the EU. There are exceptions for powdered baby milk, baby food, or pet foor required for medical reasons.
For more information about travelling to the EU after the 1st January 2021, please click here.