Mark Colley, MD of Sunways Business Travel, says: “Whether you voted remain or leave, we can all breathe a sigh of relief after the Christmas Eve announcement of a deal, however complications will arise for travellers when it comes to certain conditions, like the cap of 90 days spent in the EU per 180 days. An example of this is one client of ours who provide engineering support to manufacturing, often sending their operators in for long contract periods. In this scenario it is conceivable that they will exceed their 90-day quota.” A visa will be needed for stays of longer than 90 days in the EU for British travellers, and if there is too much red tape and expense required to obtain said visa, then British companies will end up being unable to compete with their European counterparts due to additional costs and complexities related to travel.
More cons than pros?
Scott Pawley, MD Global Travel Management says: “UK passengers travelling to EU countries will be able to take advantage of duty-free shopping from January 2021. And the reassurance that consumer protection for air travellers will be as strong as before and aviation security standards will be maintained as rigorously as before.” The downsides to the deal, said Pawley include the fact that passengers must be able to show a return or onwards ticket at border controls; it will take longer to clear passport control; passports must have at least six months validity; travellers must always obtain travel insurance.”
ITIJ would argue, of course, that having travel insurance is not a disadvantage of the deal – but in fact something that people should have had already anyway, despite the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) availability. The EHIC, will, it seems, not quite disappear altogether from the UK consciousness – in fact, it is to be replaced with a new card, the UK Global Health Insurance Card, which will entitle them to state-provided medical treatment that may become necessary during a trip to the European Union.