Getting to Britain

Passport and visa requirements for entering the UK

If you're planning an adventure to the UK, depending on your nationality and your reason for visiting, you may need to organise a visa. 

If you're an American, Canadian or Australian tourist, you'll be able to travel visa-free throughout the UK, providing you have a valid passport and your reason for visiting meets the immigration rules

Citizens from some South American and Caribbean countries as well as Japan are also able to travel visa-free around the UK. 

European Union citizens, non-EU member states of the EEA (Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland), Switzerland, and members of the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT) do not need a visa to enter the UK. If you are an EU National or are travelling to the UK from Europe, please see below for further information regarding the Brexit negotiations.


The impact of Brexit on travel: Your questions answered

Britain is packed full of amazing experiences all year round and 2019 is going to be no exception. From sporting events to literary celebrations, from music festivals to new gallery openings, visitors to Britain during 2019 are in for a cultural extravaganza.

Brexit negotiations are ongoing, but you do not need to delay your travel plans as a result. As Britain prepares to leave the EU, this is what we know so far.


What will Brexit mean for flights operating between the UK and the EU?

Both the UK Government and the European Commission have provided reassurances that flights will continue to operate between the UK and the EU after the UK leaves the EU, regardless of the wider Brexit negotiations that may be taking place.


Can EU nationals continue to travel using an ID card?

EEA national identity cards will be phased out for travel to the UK during 2020. More details will be provided shortly.


As an EU national, can I continue to use ePassport gates to enter the UK?

Citizens of current EU member states with a valid passport can use ePassport gates at airports and ports to make entry into the UK as quick and easy as possible, as long as the passport has a chip on it and the person travelling is 12 or over.


As an EU national, do I require a visa to visit the UK?

Citizens of current EU member states will continue to be able to travel to the UK without a visa, but only for a maximum period of 3 months. The official UK government website has the latest information on this and further details for any individual wanting to stay in the UK for longer than this period. You can use the official government check if you have any further visa questions.


How will driving in the UK change once the UK leaves the EU?

If you have a non-UK driving licence, how you can drive in the UK will not change once the UK leaves the EU.


What if my vehicle is not insured in the UK?

You will need to carry an insurance green card in your vehicle if ANY of the following scenarios apply:

  • If your vehicle is insured in an EU or EEA country.
  • If the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
  • If the UK leaves the EU without an agreement relating to driving without a green card.

If you are unsure if you require a green card, the official government website has the latest updates on the situation.


What can I bring with me to the UK after the UK leaves the EU?

What you can bring in your hand luggage will not change, even if the UK leaves without a deal. The food and plants you can bring to the UK will also not change.

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, regulations relating to bringing horses to and from the UK will change, as will those relating to bringing endangered plants, animals or their products to and from the UK. You should check the official government guidance relating to horses and endangered species if you are unsure if the changes will apply to you.


Can I bring my pet to the UK when I travel?

Should the UK leave the EU without a deal, the rules for bringing pets to and from the UK will change. Check the official government website for the latest advice relating to travelling with pets.


Will the cost of using my mobile phone in the UK change after the UK leaves the EU?

If the UK leaves the EU with a deal and you have a SIM card issued by a mobile phone network from an EU or EEA country, you will pay the same for calls, texts and mobile data.

If the UK leaves without a deal, or if you have a SIM card that issued outside of the EU or EEA, charges will vary depending on your mobile network.


What should I do if I am unsure about my travel requirements?

You should check the official UK Government website for the latest guidance and advice. 

 The UK’s hotels, shops and visitor attractions are currently offering great value so it really is a great time to book a trip right now. We look forward to welcoming you to Britain soon. If you have any further visa questions visit the official UK government website.