Saturday, July 13, 2024

British holidaymakers reminded of ‘important’ passport rule to avoid huge fines

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Holidaymakers are being urged to double-check the expiry dates of their travel documents before booking their holidays this summer to avoid paying fines of hundreds of pounds.

It is a common misconception that you can travel if the passport has not expired. However, holidaymakers must ensure that the expiry date is longer than three to six months away, as soon-to-be-expired passports could stop them from entering some countries.

The travel rule, implemented after Brexit, continues to catch Brits out.

People travelling to any European Union country, Iceland, Norway, Lichtenstein, and Switzerland must ensure that their passports have been issued less than 10 years before the date they enter the country.

Entering or exiting these countries without outdated documents could force travellers to pay fees for new travel documents.

Gov.uk said the fee for a new passport is £207.50, adding: “The earliest you can get an appointment is two days after you apply.

“You will get your new passport at your appointment. You can only use this service to renew an adult passport.”

Travel documents should also be valid for at least three months after the day the traveller plans to leave, the “date of expiry”.

“If travellers make it all the way to their boarding gate without checking, airlines can refuse those holding passports that were issued over 10 years ago,” said Gemma Brown, head of commercial and travel expert at Travel Republic.

“In this instance, passengers should be aware that denied boarding is reasonable due to inadequate travel documentation.

“The likelihood is that travel insurance providers would cover any costs associated with invalid or expired passports, as it’s down to the traveller to triple check their documentation is correct.”

The expert added that their advice would be to ensure that your passport is within the 10-year issue date and is valid for at least six months from the date of departure to ensure entry to most countries. She also highlighted the importance of research to know what documentation is required upon entering and leaving the chosen country.

“You can find foreign travel advice on the government website to make sure you have everything covered.”

Data from the Home Office suggests that these rules could leave 32,000 people vulnerable, said GB News.

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