As I am sure you can imagine, I am taking an acute interest in the current debate about Brexit, and keeping myself informed on what the travel industry expects the impact on tours like mine would be in the event of No Deal.
In summary, if we ‘crash out’ there is no reason why my tours will not proceed, but we may all need to take some additional steps to ensure our passports are valid and we have adequate travel/health insurance.
This is what I understand will happen if the UK exits the EU without a deal on March 29th:
On the basis HM Gov has said unequivocally that it will issue licenses to European carriers, it anticipates that other EU countries will reciprocate, ie planes will still fly, cross channel services will continue to run.
British Passport holders will be considered third country nationals as part of the Schengen agreement (which includes Italy, Spain and France) and requirements for passport validity will therefore be more stringent.
Passports will have to have been issued within the previous 10 years; be valid for at least 6 months after arrival in the destination country and be valid for at least 3 months from the date of departure from the Schengen area.
The status of the EHIC card in the event of No Deal is not certain. The UK government wishes to negotiate reciprocal arrangements with EU countries to continue the cover provided by the EHIC scheme, but at the moment it relies on what has been agreed for the Transition Period, which requires the Withdrawal Agreement to have been signed.
It seems prudent to check your Travel Insurance cover, with regard to health cover.
Strangely I cannot find a useful HM Gov website to link to, but try the Full Fact website for a view on the situation.
Existing UK driving licences may not be valid on their own. You may need to obtain an IDP – International Driving Permit, and if you are driving in Spain you will need a different permit to the one you need for France and Italy.
In the event of No Deal, if you are driving your own car to Europe, you will need to get a Green Card from your car insurance company
Data Roaming charges may change on your mobile phone – check with your phone provider.
I hope this gives you a bit more information so you can prepare, if you wish, for something that may not happen. Whether it does or it doesn’t, I think we will all need a holiday once 29th March has passed, so if you haven’t already booked a 2019 tour with me get in touch – there are a very small number of places available on a few of the tours.
Happy travelling in 2019!