October half term is here with millions of Brits planning holidays, including getaways to popular spots like Spain, Portugal, France, Turkey, Cyprus and Greece to name a few.
But as UK holidaymakers board flights with the likes of Jet2, Ryanair, easyJet, TUI, British Airways and more, they're being urged to check their travel documents before even heading to the airport.
That's because in recent months, new rules have come into force for Brits after leaving the EU.
READ MORE: Dad blogger's travel tips to make October half term holidays with kids less stressful
Earlier this year, some Brits had holidays ruined and were denied boarding flights because their passports were not valid for travel.
In fact, the UK's Foreign Office has updated its travel advice for EU countries including Spain and France to reflect the changes.
Essentially, there are two key dates to check on your passport;
- The issue date – this must be no more than 10 years before travel
- The expiry date – this must be at least three months after your holiday
In its updated travel advice, the Foreign Office explains: "If you are planning to travel to an EU country (except Ireland), or Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City, you must follow the Schengen area passport requirements.
"Your passport must be:
- issued less than 10 years before the date you enter the country (check the ‘date of issue’)
- valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check the ‘expiry date’)
"You must check your passport meets these requirements before you travel. If your passport was issued before 1 October 2018, extra months may have been added to its expiry date."
The good news is that most countries have scrapped their Covid travel rules, so in the majority of cases you won't be required to show proof of vaccination or a negative Covid test if you want to visit.
However, always check the Foreign Office advice for a destination before booking a trip or heading abroad, as travel restrictions can change quickly.
Just this week, Spain announced that it would be scrapping the last of its Covid rules for Brits, in a huge boost just in time for half term.
Have you had any issues with your passport since the change in rules? Email us at [email protected]
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