European Holidays After Brexit: How To Travel Safely After The UK Leaves The EU

Travelling across Europe will greatly differ now the UK has formally left the EU as of 1st January 2021, and although you may not be able to currently travel across Europe because of COVID-19, you should prepare and educate yourself for any differences that may impact your future travels to the continent. Here’s how future European holidays will be impacted by Brexit.

British red and black passports: Photo by Ethan Wilkinson on Unsplash

You May Need a New Passport

Your current passport is valid as long as it has six months left before it runs out or is less than 10 years old. If your passport doesn’t tick those boxes, you will need to apply for and order a new passport. It is advised that you apply for a new passport in plenty of time, so hold off on booking any future holidays until your new passport has arrived. You can check whether your passport is still valid via the UK government website. 

Choose European Travel Insurance

European citizens are protected by The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), however, if your EHIC was issued before the end of 2020, your card will still be valid until the expiry date. The UK government has expressed that they will issue a new card for their citizens, much like the EHIC. However, there has been no further comments or details on when or how this will continue to go ahead.

Therefore, you need to purchase proper travel insurance that offers proper and full coverage. Staysure offers comprehensive cover for your next visit to Europe with their 24-hour medical emergency support, emergency medical cover for COVID-19 related illnesses, and cancellations. Such travel insurance by leading providers allows you and your travel companions to explore Europe with greater peace of mind. 

You Can Only Stay for 180 days at a Time

Not only may you need a visa to enter certain EU countries, you but you are now limited to a 90-day allowance. There are exceptions to this rule. For example, visiting Croatia, Cyprus, Bulgaria, and Romania does not use up your 90 days. You will want to check how long you can stay in one country before planning your European excursion. 

Prepare for Passport Control Queues

The days of using the EU-fast-track queue are gone. Now, when you arrive in an EU country, you will have to show your return ticket. You may also need to prove that you have enough money for the duration of your visit, so be prepared to answer this question. 

EU passport control sign; Photo by Daniel Schludi on Unsplash

You May Face Mobile Phone Roaming Charges

You may have to pay more to use your mobile phone when travelling the EU, so before you go, ask your provider whether you will experience any additional charges, what they might be, and whether there are any data plans that could help cover them. Before heading abroad, be sure you know how to turn off mobile roaming so that you are not surprised by a hefty bill. The option to turn off your mobile roaming can typically be found in your phone’s ‘settings’ menu. 

While it may not seem like a lot has changed since the new rules can into play on 1st January 2021, this is not the case. You will need to be extra vigilant when it comes to planning your European holiday and ensure that your passport is up to date and that you have comprehensive European travel insurance before you board the plane. If in doubt, speak to your travel agent, so you are not caught out by anything unexpected.