Brexit

This webpage is designed to provide any necessary up to date information and advice as we draw closer to the Brexit departure date. We advise that before travelling, you also check official government advice sites such as; GOV.UK - Brexit Website - https://www.gov.uk/brexit

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Article 3 - Update (November-December 2019)

Brexit has now been delayed once again with the current 'leave date' being planned for January 16th 2020, however, with an unexpected election in December, a further delay could be expected.  
- by John Marcar

So, what does this mean right now?
Well, from a travel point of view, right now and up to the point where a definitive leave date is decided on, there is no change or additional necessities to consider when planning travel to Europe. Everything is still as it was before the referendum. 

Has anything changed or become clearer with regards to the guidelines of what happens after a deal or no-deal is decided?
There are still many grey areas and speculative conversation about what will and won't be needed after a deal or no-deal is agreed but we've put together an updated list of things to consider and be aware of:

Driving or travelling by car in Europe after Brexit:
If we leave with no-deal or a deal that doesn't cover driving licenses, you'll also need an International Driving Permit to drive in Europe. The Association of British Insurers also warned UK holidaymakers on 16th January that if we leave without a deal, to drive legally in Europe after Brexit it may be necessary to have a "green card" to prove possession of valid motor insurance - and since the cards take about a month to turn around, it may be necessary to move quickly on this one. Worth keeping in mind if you plan to bring your own car or any UK-based hire car to Europe. If you're planning to rent and drive a hire car in Europe, you will not need a green card.

Travelling by air after Brexit 
Even if we leave with no deal at all, the EU has already declared they’ll keep the skies and the airports open as part of their “no-deal” contingency plan for 12 months after Brexit, and they will also continue to recognise aviation safety certificates for nine months. They've agreed that - so long as the UK reciprocates - we can continue to enjoy visa-free travel, but recent statements on the preparations for "no-deal" also say we'd need to wait in the "other countries" passport queue, get our passports stamped and possibly answer questions about our visits, all of which would slow British holidaymakers down compared to the current situation.

New documents needed for DEAL: From 2021 we will likely need to apply for a new document before travelling in Europe the European Travel Information and Authorisation Scheme (ETIAS). But that won’t affect anyone’s plans this year or next. The EU has also agreed that, so long as we reciprocate, Brits won't need a visa

New documents needed for NO DEAL: If we do leave with no-deal, the government advises you to make sure your passport is less than ten years old and has at least six months left on it before you travel to Europe. Recent statements by the EU also suggest that - in the event, we leave without a deal - British travellers will need to queue up for a passport stamp and may have to answer questions about their trip.

Travel Insurance
Some travel insurers have introduced 'Brexit disruption cover' to their policies however if you have a preferred insurer or an existing year-round policy in place we recommend researching what travelling after a worst-case no-deal Brexit affects your policy. Insurers often offer the opportunity to read updated clauses on their website or will offer updated information over the phone.  

As always, we recommend reading the updated guidance and regulations as advised by the GOV.UK Brexit website: https://www.gov.uk/brexit

 

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Article 2 - Update (May 2019)

March 29th came and went, so does Brexit mean Brexit after all? - Perhaps not until October 31st (at least). 
- By John Marcar

With the Brexit date being postponed it's business as usual for CGT. We've successfully run 3 tours since March 31st with two being on the continent. Despite the fact that we faced no disruption to our plans at all, some customers still show concern when considering European holidays with the uncertainty of what might lie ahead, but the good news is, for now, everything remains the same.

As a UK traveller considering a trip to Europe this Summer/Autumn:

- When driving in the EU, you will not need an International Driving Permit, and if you are taking your own car, you won’t need a Green Card for insurance.

- You will still have access to state medical care in any EU country as long as you have an up to date European Health Insurance Card.

- You will be able to move through UK ports and airports, as usual, using the EU/EEA passport gates.

- All consumer rights and benefits from EU laws will also remain including airline compensation for cancellation or delays, and the ability to use your mobile phone abroad without additional charges.

What about after October 31st?
If the Government agrees on a deal on or before October 31st, the UK will then enter a transition period and everything will continue to remain the same and you can continue to travel as you do now.

There is still a possibility that the UK could leave the EU at the end of October without a deal but as written in our January update, Ferry companies and the Eurotunnel (our two most common forms of transport for reaching the continent) insist that there will be minimal disruption to services. We, of course, will continue to update this information as soon as it becomes available to us however if you would like to discuss anything in greater detail, please don't hesitate to call us.

This update has been written with assistance and information from ABTA (The Association of British Travel Agents).


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Article 1 - Planning for Brexit (January 2019)

Brexit: Are travellers right to be concerned about travelling close to or soon after the Brexit date? - We think, perhaps not. 
- by John Marcar

We're now on the cusp of one of the most significant changes as a country in recent history, Brexit. The uncertainty of Brexit is set to potentially affect many aspects of our day to day lives but more so, our ability to travel overseas with the ease that we currently have... but are people right to be worried?

According to independent travel expert Simon Calder, crossing the channel by train or sea is currently the better option for travelling to Europe soon after March 29th due to more advance planning and infrastructure being in place than with flights and airlines.

Classic Grand Touring is aware that regardless of the outcome, be that a soft Brexit, a hard Brexit or a no-deal Brexit there is still some uncertainty about just how our ferry ports and Eurotunnel terminals will deal with the movement of tourists hoping to enjoy a driving holiday soon after March 29th 2019.

When asked if check-in and boarding would be slower following the Brexit date Brittany Ferries gave the following statement; "We're working hard with our port partners to ensure our port operations are primed and ready to welcome this additional and essential traffic. There is nothing to suggest these changes to our operations will slow down checking in or embarkation."

Eurotunnel is saying much the same thing reminding customers that they are obliged as an operator to continue transporting customers between France and the United Kingdom 'come what may until 2086' so we, therefore, hope to enjoy the service that we've been used to even after March 29th.

Of course, despite the very positive assurances from suppliers, with the multiple complexities of Brexit, there are always some uncertainties too, and so, all tours currently planned around late March/early April are being planned with extra consideration for boarding and travel times. We have a very strong relationship with both Eurotunnel and Brittany Ferries and we will continue to correspond with them for advice closer to our departure dates for any essential advice.

We, Classic Grand Touring, have made a conscious decision to continue to plan and run tours soon after the Brexit date with the faith that we will be operating 'as per usual' with the same standard and quality that can be expected for all of our tours. Naturally, if you would like to discuss specific tours in greater detail, we remain on hand to answer any additional questions you might have.

To read more about the statements from Brittany Ferries please see their dedicated website: https://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/information/brexit-ferry-initiative 

For customers looking forward to travelling with the Eurotunnel, a helpful page featuring various links to FAQ's has been built including a very informative video which can be viewed here: https://www.eurotunnel.com/uk/brexit/your-travel-questions-answered/ 

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For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, check www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.