Britons expected to sign up for new visa waiver program

Post-Brexit travel rules have been in force since 1 January 2021. But even more restrictions have been placed on British travelers since the UK left the EU.

At the moment, British citizens must comply with new passport rules and entry requirements, but later this year they will also be expected to register for a new visa waiver program before entering a Schengen country.

Since leaving the EU, British citizens now have to follow the same rules as people from countries outside the EU, which tend to be stricter.

Holidaymakers must ensure they meet the new requirements to enter EU countries such as France and Spain before they travel – otherwise they may be turned away at the airport.

Find out below which current and upcoming travel restrictions apply to UK citizens.

Changes to the expiry date of the passport

People from the UK traveling to an EU country must ensure their passports meet the new entry requirements. Passport must be:

Entry requirements for the Schengen area

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

People from the UK may need to show that they have:

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The ETIAS programme

ETIAS, which stands for European Travel Information and Authorization System, is a new program that comes into force from November 2023.

People from eligible countries (which 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 they travel.

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

British citizens must also provide their personal details and answer safety and health questions. The application will be checked across a number of security databases.

Countries in the Schengen area

The countries in the Schengen area 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, Uruguay, Vanuatu and Venezuela.

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