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Overseas Trips and Travel Information

If your child is going on an overseas trip this year please read the advice from ABTA regarding the validity of passports and travelling to the EU after 29th March 2019.

UK Passports Q&A

This document answers some key questions about changes to passport validity rules in the event the UK leaves the EU without a deal in March 2019. The UK government is working with partners in the travel and transport industry to make sure people who may be affected are aware of the new rules. It is an individual’s responsibility to make sure they have the correct documentation for travel, including a passport that complies with the validity rules of whichever country they are travelling to.

  •  How do I check if my adult passport is affected?

You can check your passport is valid for travel quickly and easily by visiting: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/passport-rules-for-travel-to-europe-after-brexit Alternatively, check the expiry date of your passport – you should have at least 6 months remaining on your passport, not counting any additional months beyond 10 years. You may have extra months on your passport’s expiry date if you renewed your old passport before it expired.

  • How do I check if my child’s passport is affected?

You can check your child’s passport is valid for travel quickly and easily by visiting: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/passport-rules-for-travel-to-europe-afterbrexit​ Alternatively, check the expiry date of your child’s passport – there should be at least 6 months remaining on the passport.

  •  What is the situation with additional validity on some UK passports?

Until 10 September 2018 UK passport holders who applied before their old passport expired would have the remaining validity added onto their new passport, up to 9 months. If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK passport holders will be considered third country nationals after 29 March 2019, and this additional validity will no longer be valid for travel to the Schengen area.

  •  If I am affected, what should I do?

If you/your child’s passport does not meet the new rules on the day you plan to arrive in the Schengen area, after 29 March 2019, you should renew it. The easiest and cheapest way to renew your passport is online at: www.gov.uk/apply-renew-passport.

  •  How can I renew my passport?

The easiest and quickest way to renew your passport is to use one of our online services: www.gov.uk/apply-renew-passport.

  •  Which countries will be affected?

Travel by British passport holders to all countries that are part of the Schengen area will be affected. They are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. Travel to Ireland is subject to separate Common Travel Area arrangements which will be maintained after the UK leaves the EU. For other countries that are in the EU but not in the Schengen area, you should check the entry requirements for the country you’re travelling to in plenty of time before you book your travel at:https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-adviceThere are no changes to entry requirements for countries outside the EU and the Schengen area as a result of exiting the EU. You should however continue to check the rules for each individual country you intend to visit, just as now.

  •  Will this affect travel to other countries around the world?

No. There are no changes to entry requirements for countries outside the EU and the Schengen area as a result of exiting the EU. You should however continue to check the rules for each individual country you intend to visit, just as now. Many other countries around the world also have minimum validity requirements for passports.

  •  When will the new rules come into effect?

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the new rules would come into effect after 29 March 2019.

  •  Does this affect Crown Dependency and UK Overseas Territory passports?

Holders of Crown Dependency (Guernsey, Jersey and Isle of Man) and Gibraltar passports will need to comply with the new rules. Holders of other British Overseas Territory passports must already adhere to the Schengen Borders Code. If your Crown Dependency or Gibraltar issued passport does not meet the new rules, you may be denied entry to any of the Schengen area countries, and you should renew your passport before you travel. You can apply for a new passport at your respective Crown Dependencies or Gibraltar passport offices: o Gibraltar o Guernsey o Isle of Man o Jersey Will existing British passports that have the words ‘European Union’ on the cover still be valid after the UK leaves the EU? Yes, this does not affect the validity of the passport.

  •  If I travel with a passport that does not comply with the new rules, will I be turned away by Schengen countries’ border officers?

We are working to make sure that affected passport holders are aware of the new rules and renew their passports in advance of travel if necessary. There is a risk that you could be refused entry if your passport does not comply with the new rules, if you are travelling after 29 March 2019 in a no deal scenario.

  •  What will happen to me if I am turned away at the Schengen border?

We are working to make sure that affected passport holders are aware of the new rules and renew their passports in advance of travel if necessary. It is possible that anybody who is refused entry at the border will be required to return home.

  •  Will airlines, ferry companies, Eurotunnel and Eurostar refuse to allow me to travel if my passport doesn’t comply with the new rules to travel?

We are working to make sure that affected passport holders are aware of the new rules and renew their passports in advance of travel if necessary. We are working with the travel industry to ensure that affected passengers are informed in good time. It is possible that carriers may not allow people whose passports do not meet the new rules to travel.

  •  Will the UK government refund me if I am unable to travel, or am turned away by Schengen countries’ border officers?

No. It is an individual’s responsibility to make sure they have the correct documentation for travel. The UK government is working to make sure people who may be affected are aware of the new rules.

  •  Will airlines, ferry companies and Eurostar refund me if I am unable to travel, or am turned away by Schengen countries’ border officers?

This is a matter for the companies concerned. It is an individual’s responsibility to make sure they have the correct documentation for travel. The UK government is working with partners in the travel and transport industry to make sure people who may be affected are aware of the new rules.

  •  Will travel insurance companies refund me if I am unable to travel, or am turned away by Schengen countries’ border officers?

That will depend on the terms of individual insurance policies.

  •  Will the EU, or individual Schengen countries, refund me if I am unable to travel, or am turned away by Schengen countries’ border officers?

No. It is an individual’s responsibility to make sure they have the correct documentation for travel.

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