An update on the latest BREXIT developments.
Crossing the Border
For those taking short trips to the UK, including for tourism, short-term business visits or short-term studies, it is the UK’s intention that EU, EEA and Swiss citizens will not be required to obtain a visa. They will need to seek entry on arrival at the border and meet the requirements of the relevant immigration rules.
From 1 January 2021, free movement will end, and the UK’s new Points-Based System will be introduced. EU, EEA and Swiss citizens, except for Irish nationals, in line with other third country nationals will require a visa to work, study or join family in the UK and will also pay the Immigration Health Surcharge.
From 1 January 2021, in line with our existing treatment of citizens of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, the United States of America, Singapore and South Korea, who can use their biometric passports to pass through our e-passport gates on arrival, provision will be made to ensure that EU, EEA and Swiss citizens may also continue to use our e-passport gates and the existing queuing arrangements. This will be kept under review.
As part of the Points-Based System, a suite of changes will be implemented allowing us to strengthen the security of our border. EU, EEA and Swiss national identity cards will be phased out as a valid travel document for entry to the UK. From 1 October 2021, EU, EEA and Swiss nationals will require a passport to travel to the UK. This will not apply to those EU, EEA and Swiss nationals whose rights are protected by the Withdrawal Agreement, including those eligible for European Union Settlement Scheme status, frontier workers and joining EUSS family members. These individuals will continue to be able to use a national identity card for travel until at least 31 December 2025 and thereafter if the cards are compliant with International Civil Aviation Organisation standards.
Our future border system will protect the public and enhance prosperity. Investment in border processes, biometrics and technology will result in a border that operates with a fully digital end-to-end customer journey, improving both security and the passage of legitimate travellers through the border.
As part of this phased programme to 2025, the Government will introduce an Electronic Travel Authorisation scheme as part of plans to ensure that all those coming to the UK have permission to do so in advance of travel. Further details of these arrangements will be provided in due course.