28 October 2019 by David Warne
With the uncertainty surrounding travel after the UK's departure from the EU, we've put together this handy guide to holidaying in a post-Brexit world. What's more, to offer you financial peace of mind, we're guaranteeing that any bookings made before 31st December 2019 will not be subject to any surcharges related to exchange-rate price increases. Read on for more details.
Regardless of the Brexit outcome there is every indication that flights and travel between the UK and EU will continue after 31st January 2020, or earlier depending on a date being agreed. Even in the case of a ‘no-deal’ scenario, the European Commission and UK government have said that UK and EU airlines will still be able to operate flights between the UK and the EU.
There is nothing to suggest that we won’t be able to operate your holiday as planned. Your holiday will be protected under the Package Travel Regulations, meaning you’ll have the right to a full refund in the unlikely event that your holiday can no longer be provided for any reason irrespective of when you booked your holiday.
Our Brexit Price Guarantee
Given the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the terms of the UK’s departure from the EU, we will guarantee that any new bookings made from 13th August to 31st December 2019 will have no Brexit-related exchange-rate price increases after your holiday has been confirmed and payment made. This will give you the confidence of knowing that, whatever the outcome of negotiations, your holiday price will not increase as a result of the falling value of the pound. See below for full terms and conditions.
Brexit: what you need to know
If the UK leaves with a deal, travel between the UK and the EU will remain the same as now until at least 31 December 2020. You will not need to apply for a visa to travel to the EU during this time.
If, however, the UK leaves the EU without a deal, there are some areas where changes will apply and you may need to take action now to prepare for the impact of a possible ‘no-deal’ Brexit on your holiday to an EU or EEA country.
For further information, the Foreign Office has provided a guide to visiting Europe after Brexit.
Passport rules will be changing in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit. After the UK's departure, you should have at least 6 months left on your passport from your date of arrival in an EU or EEA country. This applies to both adult and child passports. If you renewed a passport before it expired, extra months may have been added to your new passport’s 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. See gov.uk/guidance/passport-rules-for-travel-to-europe-after-brexit to check if you need to renew your passport before you travel.
Visa and entry requirements
The European Commission has proposed that in a no-deal scenario British Citizens will still be able to travel to the EU without a visa for short stays. However, if you plan to stay within the Schengen area (which covers most of the EU - excluding Croatia, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Romania – plus Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland and Iceland) for more than 90-days, or will have spent more than 90 days in any 180-day period in the Schengen area, you will need to apply for a visa prior to travel.
On arrival in the Schengen Area, you may be asked to confirm that you have sufficient funds available for the duration of your stay. Different border control checks will apply, and you may also be asked to show a return or onward ticket and UK nationals would not have an ongoing right to use the separate lanes provided for EU, EEA and Swiss nationals.
Driving licence requirements will also be changing in a ‘no-deal’ scenario. UK driving licence holders planning to drive in the EU and European Economic Area (EEA) on or after the UK's departure from the EU may need to apply for the relevant International Driving Permit (IDP) depending on the destination country. For more information, visit gov.uk/guidance/driving-in-the-eu-after-brexit-international-driving-permits.
IDPs cost £5.50 and are available directly from the Post Office – for details, visit postoffice.co.uk/identity/international-driving-permit. There is more than one type of IDP so please check carefully which is required for each country you will be driving in. A complete list of EU and EEA countries can be found here.
If you are taking your own vehicle you’ll also need a ‘green card’ (you should allow at least one month to obtain one from your vehicle insurance company) and a GB sticker for your car (even if your number plate already shows a GB identifier).
European Health Insurance Cards (EHIC)
You should always take out appropriate travel insurance with healthcare cover before you travel abroad. After Brexit European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) cards may no longer be valid. It is particularly important you get travel insurance with the right cover if you have a pre-existing medical condition as the EHIC scheme covers pre-existing conditions, while many travel insurance policies do not. The government has produced a guide to buying travel insurance after Brexit.
Important: what you should do now
If you are planning on travelling to an EU or EEA country after 31st January 2020, please check the validity of your passport straight away. If your passport will not have sufficient validity in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit please apply for a new passport as soon as possible.
If you are planning on driving in the EU, Iceland or Norway on or after the UK's departure from the EU, please check whether the countries you intend to drive in require you to have an International Driving Permit (ID). If an IDP is required please apply in plenty of time before you travel.
Brexit Price Guarantee terms & conditions
We guarantee not to add any surcharge, or change the price of your booking after it is confirmed and full payment taken, for any reason directly related to negative exchange rate movements as a result of Brexit. This applies to any new holiday booked from 13th August to 31st December 2019, for any travel date.
This offer only applies to holidays where we are the principal and not ‘flight-only’ bookings or where we act as agent.
All other bookings conditions remain unchanged.