Blog: Travel rule changes post-Brexit: Brits expected to register for new visa waiver programme – Evening Standard


ost-Brexit travel rules have been in force since January 1, 2021. But there are even more restrictions set to be placed on British travellers since the UK left the EU.

Currently, UK nationals need to abide by new passport rules and entry requirements, but later this year, they will also be expected to register for a new visa waiver programme before entering a country in the Schengen Zone.

Since leaving the EU, UK nationals must now follow the same rules as people from non-EU countries, which tend to be stricter.

Holiday makers must ensure they meet the new requirements for entering EU countries like France and Spain before travelling–or they could be turned away at the airport.

Find out below what the current and upcoming travelling restrictions that apply to UK nationals.

Passport expirations changes

People from the UK travelling to an EU country must make sure their passports meet the new entry requirements. Passports must be:

  • Issued less than 10 years before the date you enter the country.
  • Valid for at least three months after they day you intend to leave the country.

Schengen Area entry requirements

UK holiday makers visiting a country in the Schengen Area (a group of 26 European countries that have abolished passport and border controls at their mutual borders) may need to provide additional documents when entering the country.

People from the UK might have to show that they have:

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ETIAS programme

ETIAS, which stands for European Travel Information and Authorisation System, is a new programme that will come into force from November 2023.

People from eligible countries (that do not require a visa to enter the Schengen zone, including the UK), will be required to register with ETIAS for a visa waiver before travelling.

Travellers will need to apply for the ETIAS online, using a valid passport, email address, and a debit or credit card to pay the application fee, which will vary by country.

UK nationals will also need to provide their personal details and answer security and health questions. The application will be checked across a number of security databases.

Countries in the Schengen Area

The Schengen Area countries are Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

ETIAS eligible countries

The ETIAS eligible countries are Albania, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominica, El Salvador, Georgia, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Macao, North Macedonia, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, Samoa, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Taiwan, Timor Leste, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uruguay, Vanuatu, and Venezuela.

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