Many holidaymakers will be worrying about how Brexit, deal or no deal, will affect their travel plans. While European leaders agreed to extend the UK’s EU membership until October 31, following a second request by the British government for a delay to Brexit, there are still concerns about Brits travelling to Europe.
The European Union has assured travellers that planes will continue to fly but there has been talk of a cap on flight numbers by the European Commission. This could mean that extra flights laid on by British airlines are cancelled. This is just one of the worries. There are others and it’s difficult to know exactly what will happen. With this in mind I have taken the time to look at what people can do to try to Brexit proof their holidays.
Book a package trip
Although airlines say they are confident that flights won’t be affected, it could be a good idea to book a package holiday. Package holidays offers the best protection because if a flight is cancelled the onus is on the tour operator to make alternative arrangements. If not, they must make a full refund.
However, it’s important to check the small print these days. Some companies such as Tui, Thomas Cook and Jet2, have added clauses to their terms and conditions to avoid compensation payouts if planes cannot fly after Brexit.
You’ll need to aware of another issue with package holidays. There could be “Brexit surcharges”. These can be levied if tour companies can prove there has been a “demonstrable increase” in the cost of providing a holiday.
All-inclusive holidays might not be everyone’s cup of tea but they do currency proof your trip. This type of holiday reduces the need to spend money while abroad, which means that any currency fluctuations will be minimised because you have paid up-front for a holiday.
It’s worth looking at all-inclusive holidays in countries with lower currency rates such as Turkey and Portugal
Check your passport
New rules will require that Brits to have at least six months’ validity on their travel documents to enter the European Union. This could lead to a surge in applications for new passports so it’s a good idea to plan well ahead if your passport is close to expiry.
New visa rules
Also, from 2021, Brits will be required to apply for a visa under the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS). The new visa, which will work in the same way as the US ESTA, will be valid for three years and cost €7. Deal or no deal, Britons will be required to have a visa.
Don’t go without travel insurance
While Brits are currently covered in Europe by the blue European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), which covers all, or most of, the cost of medical treatment, there is no knowing if this will continue after a Brexit deal.
This means you need to have travel insurance. It is recommended that you choose a policy that will cover medical expenses of at least £1 million. A finance expert with Money Pug, a comparison website used to find cheap travel insurance, explains that travel cover is often purchased by savvy travellers who want some degree of protection on their next holiday.
International driving permit
Brits have been warned that British driving licences will not be valid on their own, which means you’ll need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to drive your own car or hire car abroad. However, there will still be some countries that will allow Brits to drive without need for a permit. It’s important to check well ahead of your travel.
From February 1, IDPs will be available at 2,500 Post Offices nationwide at a cost of £5.50.
Passport for pets
A no deal Brexit will probably mean your pet’s European passport will no longer be valid. Give yourself plenty of time to apply for a new passport with all the required tests and vaccinations.