Behind the Headlines

“French government warns UK citizens will need visas after no-deal Brexit without emergency action”

Written on 11/02/2018



What’s the story?

The French Government have publicly stated that, in the case of a ‘no-deal Brexit’, British citizens will require visas to visit the country, as well as a permit if they intend to work. Read more in The Independent.


How reliable is it?

Possible. In case of a no-deal Brexit, the UK would automatically become a third country vis a vis the EU, and would therefore join the list of countries whose citizens would, unless otherwise agreed, require a visa to travel to Schengen area countries in the EU.


What’s the background?

  • Future travel arrangements between the UK and the rest of the EU is currently undecided, and rests initially upon the outcome of the negotiations on a Withdrawal Agreement and, ultimately, the future relationship arrangements. Evidence
  • The prospect of requiring visas to travel to the EU in case of a no-deal Brexit was examined in a document presented to MEPs on the European Parliament's Brexit steering group. Evidence
  • The College of Commissioners, the EU’s executive branch, comprising a Commissioner from each member country, will discuss in November whether British citizens should be placed on the list of ‘visa-required third countries’ in case of a no-deal Brexit. Evidence
  • Any decision would be a matter for the EU countries in the Schengen area, the common border-free travel area that comprises of all but six of the EU countries. Evidence
  • At present, Ireland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Romania (and the UK) are not members of the Schengen area. Evidence
  • As any arrangement is likely to be reciprocal, this may mean that nationals of these countries would also need visas to travel to the UK after 2021. Evidence
  • If the UK were to be placed on the list of countries requiring a visa, British travellers would have to pay for prior authorisation to travel, at €60 for adults and €35 for children. Evidence
  • Even if Britain is not placed on the list of countries requiring a visa, there may be costs, as the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS - the European equivalent of the USA’s electronic travel authorization (ESTA) scheme) will come into force in 2020, for which for travellers from visa-exempt third countries pay a fee of €7. Evidence
  • However, if a Brexit deal is reached between the EU and the UK, a 21-month transition period will commence, meaning that free movement would continue at least until the end of 2021. Evidence
    This Behind the Headlines Briefing was first published on the DoorstepEU app: http://www.richardcorbett.org.uk/app