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Brexit: Travel to Crete from 2021

The following faq's have been designed to help you with the specific questions you may have about travelling to Crete after the 1st of January 2021 when the UK will have left the EU and transition period.

Can I go on holiday to Greece?

As from 1st January 2021, the UK is classed as a 3rd country.

UK nationals are permitted to enter Greece if they are a permanent resident in the UK, Greece or another EU/EFA state or in Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand or the UAE.

The latest travel advice can be found on the government website - Greece travel advice - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

What about passports?

Your passport will need to :-

  • Have at least 6 months left on it before it expires and
  • Be less than 10 years old

If you need a new passport the government advises you apply in plenty of time.

You won't be able to use EU fast-track passport control and customs lanes but at Chania airport, these lanes never existed. Passengers from the UK arrived at the "extra schengen" gate where passports were always inspected although they may be inspected more thoroughly after Brexit.

When you arrive you may need to show your return ticket and may need to show you have enough money for your stay.

Will I need a visa?

As things stand, you will not need a VISA. As a tourist, you'll be able to travel to most EU countries without a visa.

You'll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any rolling 180-day period.

UK nationals may have to pay for a visa-waiver scheme in order to visit many European countries.

What about health insurance?

The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) which entitled British citizens to state-provided medical treatment if you fell ill or had an accident in an EU country, will still be valid until the expiry date on the card.

If your EHIC card has expired you will be able to apply for the new Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC)  - Apply for a free UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) - NHS (www.nhs.uk)  

Even with the EHIC/GHIC, it was always vitally important to take out travel insurance that included health care and cover in the case of a cancellation.

Hiring a car and driving in Crete.

You'll need to take your Great Britain or Northern Ireland driving licence with you (no change there) and you may need an International Driving Permit if you still have the old style paper licence, available from The Post Office -International Driving Permit | Post Office.

You do not need an International Driving Permit if you have the plastic licence.

Also check the government website for advice about driving abroad

Mobile Phone Roaming Charges

The guarantee of free roaming throughout the EU ends on 1/1/21 but  the 4 main UK mobile phone providers have stated that they will not be abandoning free roaming (not at the moment at least).

You should check with your mobile provider to see if you're likely to face extra charges when you travel to Greece.

The government has also passed laws to protect customers, including :-

  • Requirements for customers to be notified when they've reached 80% and 100% of their data allowance.
  • A £45-a-month cap on using mobile data abroad (you will be able to top this up if more data allowance is needed).