We all know that Brexit is coming… but with so much confusion surrounding the process, we are unaware how this unknown phenomenon will affect our travel plans, now and in the future.
On the 29th March, whatever the deal, things will start to change for us here in the UK. At present we have no way of knowing for definite what these changes will be and what they will mean for us. One thing we are assured of, is that flights will still operate between the UK and EU, regardless of the Brexit outcome.
To try to put your mind at ease, we have covered what we feel are the important issues at present. This will hopefully help you as you book your holidays for the coming year.
We will eventually be required to change our passports as part of the Brexit deal, but this will not happen immediately. The pressing issue after the 29th March will be a requirement to have at least 6 months remaining on your passport at the travel date. If you renewed a 10-year passport before it expired, you possibly had several months added on from your previous document. If this was the case, the ‘extra months’ will not count towards the 6 months you are required to have remaining. If, for example, you renewed your passport in August 2009 and it expires in January 2020 you will need to renew it by February this year to fall within the guidelines. There is more information on the .gov website.
You should not require a visa to visit Europe, even if there is a no-deal scenario. We may need to pay a small fee for a ‘visa exemption certificate’ in the future, but it is not something we need to worry about right now.
Will the European Health Insurance Card still be valid?
If there is ‘no-deal’ then it is likely that the EHIC will not be valid after the 29th March. At present this card can be used by all EU citizens to claim free or reduced cost medical treatment in the event or an illness or accident. Whilst we are all encouraged to carry an updated EHIC card on our travels, the government recommends that we take out separate travel insurance to cover any healthcare requirements we may need in all countries we travel to, including the EU. It is also important to remember to declare any pre-existing medical conditions to validate your insurance, should you need to make a claim.
As always, you will need your full driving licence to drive abroad. If there is ‘no-deal’ when we leave the EU on the 29th March, we may need an International Driving Permit, at a cost of £5.50. If you are planning to drive abroad after this date, you will need to take this into consideration. Depending on where you’re travelling, you may need more than one permit, so check with each individual country. As with many of the Brexit issues, this is still only a possibility but one you need to be aware of! There is more information on this topic on confused.com.
Green Card for your Vehicle
A Green Card is an internationally-recognised document that acts as proof of insurance in Europe. We are currently required to produce this document if we are driving outside of the EU, in Bosnia or Turkey for instance. Again, if there is a ‘no-deal’ scenario, we would be required to carry a Green Card supplied by our insurance company for travel within the EU. Your insurer will be able to help you with this document.
To sum up; if we wish to go ahead now with our travel plans, we should be confident that we will be able to do so, with the possibility of a few minor changes. If you are at all worried, book a ‘package holiday’ rather than putting one together yourself. You will be protected under the Package Travel Regulations, where you will receive a full refund if your holiday can no longer be provided.
Finally, as soon as you’ve booked your holiday, plan how you will be getting to the airport. Taking your car and parking at one of our secure car parks is the easiest option for you, and if you book in advance you will be sure to get the best deal!