Taking European Holidays After Brexit - Preparation is Key

Travelling to the EU

Be sure to properly prepare for your EU trip after Brexit. Be mindful of these 6 important points to ensure that your holiday goes according to plan.

Whilst politically we left the EU on the 1st January 2021, our desire to take holidays on the beautiful Mediterranean coast or sample the culture of major European capitals remains undiminished. The Government’s now released guidance on how BREXIT will affect future holidays taken in EU member states and other European countries. This can be found at https://www.gov.uk/visiteurope-1-january-2021. Our advice to you is that preparation is key.

1. Take out a travel insurance policy

COVID-19 has shown us how important taking out a travel insurance policy is as part of your holiday plans. We believe that saving money by not taking out a travel insurance policy is a false economy. We strongly suggest you make sure that:

  • You are not too old for the policy, as some policies will include a maximum insurable age
  • You declare your pre-existing medical conditions, as some travel insurance policies require you to declare these dependent on where you are travelling to. You may be offered the option of paying an additional premium to cover any declared pre-existing medical conditions.
  • You should explore taking out a policy which includes supplier failure or travel disruption covers if you’ve booked a non packaged holiday.

2. Make sure that you have you have a valid passport

Your passport must be less than 10-years old and have at least 6-months left by your scheduled departure date. Most of us will still have our maroon EU passport, but if you need to replace with a new blue UK passport make sure you allow enough time to complete and submit your application, as well as receive it back from your nearest passport issuing office. It’s also worth remembering that no travel insurance policy will settle a cancellation claim caused by you not having a valid passport or new EU travel visa in place.

3. Make sure that you take out the UK’s Global Health Insurance

This is the replacement for the EU’s European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) reciprocal health agreement. Remember, it’s not a replacement for a travel insurance policy. As per the EHIC, the GHIC only covers emergency medical and treatment costs should you fall ill within EU countries. Please check the Government advice on which countries the GHIC currently includes.

4. What happens if my tour operator fails or my trip is affected

If you have taken out a package holiday, the 2018 Package Travel Regulations will continue to apply. Failing that, if you have paid for your holiday with your credit card, you should be afforded Section 75 protection.

If you have arranged your holiday independently, again if you have paid for your holiday with your credit card, you should be afforded Section 75 protection. Failing that other non-package tour operators should comply with Competition Market Authority legislation.

5. Self-drive holidays

You must make sure that you have a Driving Green Card and GB sticker for your vehicle. Full details of how you apply for these can be found on the Government’s website. It’s likely the Driving Green Card issuing office will be dealing with a large number of requests later in the year - please give yourself as much time as possible.

6. Pet travel

Again, some preparation is required. An Animal Health Certificate (AHC) is now required at least one month in advance of your scheduled departure date.

About the author

Tony Gilpin MCMI, CII COP is a highly respected and chartered industry leader with over 25 years’ experience in travel insurance, tour operators insurance financial failure insurance, travel agents insurance, bonding insurance and the travel industry, specialising in leadership, strategy, sales and account management. He is a Member of the Chartered Management Institute and also holds the Chartered Institute of Insurance's Certificate of Proficiency.

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