The United Kingdom is getting there. Midnight Friday, the British will say bye Bye in the European Union, more than three years after the 2016 Brexit referendum. An upheaval that plunges many EU citizens into the dark.
But there’s no need to panic immediately. If you have planned a trip across the Channel this year, no additional steps will be necessary. Indeed, the withdrawal agreement concluded between London and Brussels provides for a transition period which runs until December 31, 2020.
No changes until December 31
During this period, « all rights » of the Union with regard to free movement « will be maintained […] as if the United Kingdom is still a member of the European Union, « says the European Commission. In other words, a valid identity card or passport will suffice to travel there as part of a trip. will be required.
Likewise, UK law will provide the same rights as those provided by the EU in the event of denied boarding, cancellation or long delay of flights, trains, buses or boats. European carriers will therefore continue to be subject to Union law for travel to and from the EU.
No more changes to plan for school trips. Only an identity card or passport and authorization to leave the country for minors will be requested during the transition period. Travel conditions with a pet will again be the same as at present, while the French driving license will still allow you to travel across the Channel.
The extended transition period?
Finally, the European Health Insurance Card (CEAM) or, failing that, the Provisional Replacement Certificate will remain valid during the transition period and will allow access and treatment of the necessary medical care during the stay . A French tourist can therefore be treated on the same conditions as an insured person from the British social security scheme, at the financial cost of his health cover.
The transition period will help establish the future trade relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union. Negotiations are expected to start sometime in February. But many doubt the possibility of reaching an agreement in just eleven months. This is why an extension of the transition period until December 31, 2021 or even 2022 cannot be excluded.
Once it is completed, the British government website states that the identity card for citizens of the European Economic Area (EEA) will no longer be accepted for travel to the United Kingdom. The presentation of a passport will therefore be compulsory. However, a visa should not be required for stays of less than three months.