EU travel after Brexit: Will no deal Brexit affect my holiday in Europe? Will I need a visa to enter EU countries?

EU travel after Brexit: Will no deal Brexit affect my holiday in Europe? Will I need a visa to enter EU countries?

Politicans on all sides of the Brexit debate are ramping up preparations for no deal after Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement was defeated.

The Prime Minister’s deal was resoundly voted down on Tuesday evening in what was the government’s biggest ever defeat.



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But the March 29 deadline to leave the EU looms ever closer and we still don’t seem any nearer to breaking the Brexit deadlock paralysing Parliament.

It is looking ever more likely that the UK will crash out of the EU without a deal, potentially threatening peoples’ holiday plans post-Brexit.

So what would a no deal Brexit look like for British holidaymakers? 

UK to EU flights after Brexit

Will you be able to fly to Europe under a no deal Brexit? (PA)

Thankfully, both the European Commission and the UK government have both offered assurances that flights between the two will operate as normal.

But the commission said it will aim to only “ensure basic connectivity” with the UK.

Meanwhile, the UK government said that although it hopes EU countries will grant airlines permission to operate in its airspace, it warned that there “could be disruption to some flights”.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) said on Tuesday that “uncertainty for travelers and airlines” remains, arguing that a no deal scenario could lead to a cap on flights and higher prices.

Alexandre de Juniac, director general and CEO, said: “But with two months left until Britain leaves the EU, airlines still do not know exactly what kind of Brexit they should be planning for. 

“In the small window remaining before Brexit it is imperative that the EU and UK prioritize finding a solution that brings certainty to airlines planning growth to meet demand and to travelers planning business trips and family holidays.”

Driving in the EU after Brexit

Official government advice says that you may need an international driving permit if you were planning on driving in the EU in the event of a no deal scenario.

If you are currently living in the EU with a UK driving licence, it is recommended you get a local EU driving licence before March 29. 

After that date you may need to pass a new driving test.

Holidaymakers and businesses intending to use their vehicles on the continent, or anyone crossing the Irish border by road, have also been warned they will need a “Green Card” if a deal is not reached.

Private motorists and companies have been told to contact their insurance providers around a month before they plan to travel to get one – or risk breaking the law. The same rules apply to European Economic Area (EEA) motorists travelling to the UK.

Visas for EU countries after Brexit

Will you need a visa to visit the Alps? (Cheval Blanc)

The EU confirmed last year that travellers would have to pay seven euros every three years to travel to Schengen countries after Brexit.

Holidaymakers won’t need a visa if a deal was agreed, but they will need to apply for the three-year pre-travel authorisation called an ETIAS, which is similar to the scheme used by the USA and only takes minutes to fill out.

This does not count for countries that are part of the EU but not in the Schengen zone.

However, a spokesman said last year that if Britain crashes out of the bloc with no agreement in place to mitigate ensuing disruptions, Britons could require visas.

Booking a European holiday for after March 29

Anyone with plans to travel after March 29 has been advised to have at least six months left on their passports, from the date of arrival in the EU.

But apart from that is expected that Brexit will not affect holidays after the leave date.

Downing Street last year moved to dismiss claims that travellers were told not to book holidays after March in the event of a no deal Brexit.

And travel agents’ body Abta added: “There is nothing to suggest that you will not be able to continue with your holiday plans after 29 March. 

“Even in a no-deal scenario, the European Commission has said flights to and from the UK will still be able to operate.”

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