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It’s probably a subject that the majority of the UK are sick of hearing about, but we must all accept that Brexit will have a huge impact on the way in which UK citizens can travel.
With no real definition of what will happen after the March 29th deadline, much of the information we are receiving can be taken with a pinch of salt.
However, the FCDO have recently updated their information on how the travel rights of Brits will change after we leave the European Union.
The biggest variant that is factored into the information is whether the UK leaves with a deal or on ‘no-deal’ terms.
If it is the former, little will change until at least January 2021. That is, the transition period means that UK citizens will maintain their right to travel and work within the EU until at least 31st December 2020.
What happens after that, is up in the air, and is something that is likely to be ironed out in the deal that is struck with the EU member nations.
If the UK do leave without a deal though, changes will be afoot after March 29th.
According to the FCDO, the European Commission have proposed an agreement that would mean that UK travellers would be able to visit and stay in EU countries for up to 90 days within any 180 day period.
Any trips taken prior to Britain exiting the EU will count towards a person’s 90-day trip limit.
Not surprisingly, anyone wishing to work within other UK countries during this time will be required to obtain the relevant visa or work permit.
Other recommendations in order to prepare for the prospect of a no-deal Brexit include ensuring you have plenty of time left on your passport.
The FCDO states that should the UK leave without a deal, passports will be required to have a minimum of six months remaining on them after your date of arrival in a country in the Schengen zone. This will not include Ireland, which will remain as it currently is.
For other countries in the EU, but outside of the Schengen group of countries, such as Cyprus and Bulgaria, other rules may apply and it is advised to check before booking any travel to these countries.
What will happen with the UK citizens’ rights to healthcare in Europe in the event of no-deal are less clear.
Currently holding an European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will ensure that you have access to free or reduced-cost treatment in state hospitals in EU nations.
However a no deal would mean those rights are likely to cease. Travel insurance is vital, even now, to cover travellers for the complete cost of emergency medical expenses, but that need will be intensified in a no-deal scenario.
In that situation it’s vital that anyone planning a trip to Europe, or anywhere else for that matter, takes out suitable protection.
You can stay up to date with the effects Brexit will have on your travel rights by visiting the Gov.UK website.