Now the United Kingdom has left the European Union, Brits are going to see some changes in how they travel abroad for their holidays. We are currently in a transition period until 1st January 2021. But, there is no need to panic about not being able to get your mountain fix in Morzine. In fact, it may even benefit you if you book at the right time. In this post, we are going to guide you through the changes that will be enforced once the transition period is over, and what you need to do to still enjoy your summer or winter holiday.
We have been doing some extensive research into what to expect, and according to the British government’s campaign “New Start – Lets Get Going”, Brits will be able to move around in the same ways, just with different documentation.
To make things easier, the government has released a self checker tool, which tells you about all the necessary steps you need to take during the transition period.
In addition to this handy self checker, they have also released a guide on visiting Europe after 1st January 2021, but keep reading for our summary.
You don’t need to worry about passports until 1st January 2021. Therefore, you can travel as you have been used to, up until the end of the year. So, currently, you don’t need to change your travel plans until then. Just make sure that you have at least 6 months left on your passport before setting off on your holiday.
After Brexit, your passport will still be valid as British travel documents until they expire. However, they won’t have any clout as European passports. Also, there is a good chance that your passport will need to have at least 15 months left on it before you travel. Passport checks are likely to be more strict when entering the E.U, so please ensure that it fulfils the requirements before travelling. If you are planning to visit several E.U countries, the validity of your passport will be critical, as there will be restrictions on free movement too.
A common question for British travellers is “Will I need a Visa to travel to E.U countries?”.
Once the transition period is over, British tourists will be considered as ‘third-country nationals’, meaning that they will be allowed to visit E.U countries for up to 90 days in every 180 days without a visa but, they will not be allowed to work or study.
However, Brits will be subject to the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS).
The ETIAS will be set up before 2022, and its goal is to keep tabs on migration, security and public health risks from people from visa-exempt third countries. It is a very similar scheme to the US ESTA system. Before travelling, you will need to fill in a very simple online form, which you will state your health and employment status, as well as any criminal convictions.
The good news, is that once you have filled in the ETIAS form, it lasts for three years and only costs about £6.
Taking Your Pet On Holiday
During the transition period, U.K pet owners will be able to travel to the E.U with their dog, cat or ferret, using a current UK-issued EU pet passport.
To get a pet passport, you need to visit your vet. You can get all the information from the government’s website, but in summary, you need to take:
– Your pet
– Your pet’s identity and vaccination records
– Rabies blood test results, if your pet needs them
Before you travel
Check that the vet has filled in the following sections in the pet passport:
– Details of ownership – you must sign section I if your pet passport was issued on or after 29 December 2014
description of animal
– Marking or identification of animal
– Vaccination against rabies
– Rabies blood test (if needed)
– Details of the vet issuing the passport (for passports issued from 29 December 2014)
– Your dog’s tapeworm treatment (if needed)
However, after the transition period, travelling with your pet depends on what categorisation the U.K will have as a third country. There are three different categories of a third country:
– Part 1 listed
– Part 2 listed
The different categories dictate different procedures for travelling with pets. As we don’t yet know which category the U.K will be placed in, we recommend that you check out the government’ s website for all the details.
However, we recommend that to make sure your pet can travel from the U.K to the E.U from 1st January, to contact your vet at least 4 months before your travel date to get the latest advice.
Your EHIC that formally gave British traveller the right to medical care while travelling in the E.U will not be valid after the transition period. Therefore, we recommend that you get quality travel insurance.
If you already have travel insurance, there is a good chance that it will still be valid, but you will need to check your policy. But, travel insurance is a bit of a sore point at the moment, thanks to the virus. Luckily, MPI is an insurance company that will provide emergency medical cover if you contract Covid-19 while on holiday. You can read all about this in our practical information page.
There are a few advantages to driving to the Alps, but one of them is reducing your contact with the public. Check out our guide to driving to Morzine for all the details.
Driving and catching the ferry or Le Shuttle to France is going to be more popular thanks to Covid-19. However, if you do decide to fly after Brexit, you may not have to wait too long in airport immigration queues.
U.K drivers licences will continue to be 100% valid throughout the E.U for holidaymakers and business travellers until the 1st January, with no extra required documentation.
However, it is not sure exactly what will happen after the transition period is up. But, one of the most likely outcomes will be that U.K licence holders would be required to obtain an International Driving Permit (IDP) before driving in E.U countries.
If IDPs are introduced, they will simply be an additional document to be carried alongside your valid U.K driving licence, and which you would need to successfully apply for and secure before your date of travel. You can get your IDP now at your local Post Office. Click here to see all the information you need to get yours.
Mobile Phones and Roaming Charges
According to the UK government’s website, there is a good chance that free-roaming may come to an end when using your phone abroad after Brexit. Therefore, we recommend that you check with your phone operator to see if you are going to be charged for roaming after the transition period expires.
However, there is some good news, as a new law has been passed to protect you from incurring mobile data charges above £45 without you knowing. When you reach the £45 threshold, you will get an option to spend more to keep using the internet on your phone abroad.
As you can see, as far as we know right now, there is no need to panic. You will just have to spend a little more time at the airport, get some quality insurance and ensure your passport is up to date.
I mentioned earlier that you may even benefit from travelling after Brexit. This is because you can now take advantage of our special offers for the first 3 weeks of January. In addition to this, we are set to offer 10% OFF ANY holidays falling between the dates of Saturday 2nd and ending on or before Sunday 24th January. So keep an eye on our website and social media channels for updates on these Brexit busting deals.
Your reservation must be made by the end of 31st August 2020.