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Brexit: EU Travel from 1st January

30 Dec 2020

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All information detailed is courtesy of gov.uk. To find out more, keep up to date with the latest on travelling to the EU and for the latest travel advice: Visit Europe from 1st January 2021 or Foreign Travel Advice

Travel to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein will change from 1st January 2021 and here is a summary of things you may need to consider before you depart:


If you are travelling to an EU country, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland then you may need to renew your British passport earlier than anticipated.

On your departure date, your passport will need to have at least 6 months remaining and be less than 10 years old. These rules do not apply to travel to Ireland.

Healthcare, Medical Insurance and EHIC

Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will continue to be valid if you’re travelling to an EU country until it’s expiry date.

If you’re travelling to Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein you will need to obtain appropriate travel insurance which includes cover for emergency medical expenses. As a specialist travel insurance provider, Freedom can cover pre-existing medical conditions with emergency medical expenses up to £10 million and repatriation costs included. Click here to obtain a quote with Freedom.

You may be entitled to apply for a new UK EHIC that you can continue to use from 1st January 2021 but only if you fall into a specific criteria. This includes UK students studying in the EU, EU nationals in the UK and some British State Pensioners who live in the EU. To find out more visit:  Apply for a free European Health Insurance Card

Visas, EU Driving and Pet Travel

Border Control - When entering other countries, border control may require you to show your return or onward ticket as well as proof of available funds to cover the duration of your stay. You may also need to use separate lanes from the EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing.

Visas - If you’re travelling as a tourist for up to 90 days in any 180-day period, you will not need a visa for most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You may require a visa or permit for longer stays including for work, study and business travel. For information on how to get a visa or permit for individual countries, visit the FCDO travel advice.

Food & Drink – You will not be able to take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries from 1st January 2021.

EU Driving – If you’re planning to take your own vehicle abroad, you’ll need a green card and a GB sticker. You may also require an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in some EU countries and Norway if you have a paper driving license or a license issued in Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey or the Isle of Man.

Pet Travel - From 1st January 2021 you will no longer be able to use the current pet passport scheme. Instead, you will require a animal health certificate (AHC) for your pet.

Contact Us

To obtain a travel insurance quote or for any queries regarding travel to the EU from 1st January 2021 you can contact us on 01223 446 914 or by email operations@freedominsure.co.uk.