Brexit passports: Urgent changes to UK passports as Brexit deal imminent

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A Brexit deal has been struck between the UK and EU just days before the transition period is due to end on December 31. New changes lay ahead of travel between the UK and the EU.

One of the biggest new policies surrounds passports, with Britons now urged to check their travel document meets all of the new post-Brexit requirements.

The Government has already updated its website with anticipated changes to help travellers plan ahead for journeys in the future.

It has not yet been revealed if any more changes will come as the result of a deal, though details will likely be released in the coming days.

“Until 1 January 2021, you can continue to travel to Europe with your UK passport until it expires,” explains the website.

“New rules will apply for travel to Europe from 1 January 2021.”

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Travellers must ensure they have enough time left on their passport before expiry.

According to the Government: “You’ll need to have at least six months left on an adult or child passport to travel to most countries in Europe (not including Ireland).

“If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date.

“Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the six months needed.”

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It warns: “You’ll need to renew your passport before travelling if you do not have enough time left on your passport.”

Britons can apply to renew their passport either online via the website, or by post either in person at a local Post Office or by using the Post Office check and Send Service.

It usually takes up to three weeks to renew or replace a passport online. It may take longer for a first adult passport.

However, there have been some extra wait times recorded in the last year due to a backlog amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“Do not book travel unless your passport meets the entry requirements of the country you’re travelling to,” adds the Government warning.

The new rules will apply for travel to and between most countries in Europe.

However, the rules will not apply when travelling to Ireland.

Furthermore, it does not matter if you have an older EU passport or a new blue passport, as long as it is valid.

The Government explains: “If your passport is burgundy or has ‘European Union’ on the cover, you can continue to use it until it expires.”

The Government lists the countries where the new passport rules apply as:

  • Andorra
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • San Marino
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Vatican City

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