The Brexit effect
As much as the world was distracted with the goings on with Covid, on 31st December 2020 Brexit still happened. There was some disruption with deliveries and imports and a lot of people got caught out not knowing the new rules on duty and VAT, but largely it happened quite quietly.
It is obviously a huge deal and I think there will be a number of years before we understand what the long term effects will be, but for now we’re here just to talk about what it means for travelling. In particular travelling to Morzine and France.
In short you are now subject to migration, customs, health and plant health controls.
You are allowed to travel into the EU for up to 90 days in any 180 without a visa. Not really a worry for holiday travel, but beware if you make regular trips. You need to make sure that your whole trip fits in the 90 days and if you have had an earlier trip, that was less than 180 days before, then those days count towards your 90 day total.
You can travel for work within the 90 days as long as you are paid in the UK. If you wish to work in France then it is a whole different story and at the moment practically impossible. Yes Brexit has effectively eradicated going to do a season or the chance to work in Europe, especially as a ski or snowboard instructor. This is something I do hope they sort out at some point but for now we need to rethink how we find our staff.
You will get your passport stamped and need to use a different lane when passing through passport control, which is a bit of a novelty really and in my experience so far it’s actually been quicker through the non-EU lane, but that’s been during covid times and can’t really take that as what’s going to be normal. Be aware though that your passport has more than 6 months of validity left on it.
You can also be asked to prove, where your staying, a hotel booking or letter from hosts if staying a private residence. Also that you have adequate finances for your stay. This is usually the equivalent of €65 a day. You will also need adequate insurance to cover medical emergencies and death. If you have an Ehic card this is still valid, if it has run out you can apply for its replacement, the Ghic, for free through the NHS.
If you are a non UK citizen but have residency in the UK, this will no longer allow you access to the EU and you will have to go through the process for your native country.
There are limitations on what you can and can’t take back and forth that weren’t there before. Alchohol and tobacco are the obvious ones, that have personal limits. It’s 4 liters of wine in case you were interested.
No meat products or meat based products at all. That goes for milk and milk-based products as well. Not sure of it goes as far as milk chocolate though. So taking home any Reblochon.
You are allowed a certain value of goods or gifts that you do not have to declare. That’s €430 if your arriving by plane or ferry or €300 if arriving by car or other means. Though that is only €150 if you are under 15, for any means of travel. Anything over that can will be subject to duty and VAT.
It’s a bit more complicated for pets as well. Pet passports are no longer valid. They will need a health certificate from a registered vet, that includes proof of rabies vaccination. Although this is valid for 4 months, you will need to cross the border within 10 days of day of issue.