The UK is supposed to be leaving the European Union on Friday 29th March. However, despite the short time frame, everything still seems relatively murky in terms of a final decision. If Theresa May fails to win Parliament over with her revised withdrawal agreement there will be another vote. This will allow Members of Parliament to vote to leave the EU without a deal – this is known as a no deal Brexit.
Many people are understandably worried as the outcome of no deal Brexit. The media has been rife with hearsay and many people are left confused as to what this would mean for nationals and expats alike. We shine a light on some of the areas that could affect you:
Finances & Insurance
Many UK citizens head to EU countries and are able to use their bank cards. Many banks enable you to use your card overseas without any additional charges. However, the government has warned that this could become more expensive.
Further to this, if a no deal Brexit was to come to fruition, the EHIC card become obsolete. Therefore, those moving or travelling to EU countries would be encouraged to take out private health care insurance to cover them whilst they are away.
Passports & Travel
If you are planning on travelling to the EU following a no deal Brexit the government is instructing that you should have at least six months left on your passport before it expires. You can check if your passport is close to expiry by using an online government tool.
You will not need a visa to stay in EU countries, even following a no deal Brexit, if you are staying for no more than 90 days out of a 180 day stretch. Nothing has been set in stone yet but you might need a visa if you intend for staying longer.
Travel to Cyprus, Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia will be subject to country-specific requirements.
Travel to Ireland would be subject to Common Travel Area measures. This will remain the same after the UK leaves the EU.
If a no deal Brexit is the result, flights between the UK and the EU will continue to operate as per normal. This has been clarified by the Association of British Travel Agents and the UK government.
Some government assessors have warned that there may be delays at London St Pancras International railway station for a period of time following a no deal result. However, Eurostar has commented that they would endeavour to have all services running as seamlessly as possible.
Those wishing to drive in EU countries may need to get their hands on an International Driving Permit to enable them to do so.
Cost of Living
A no deal Brexit would likely result in increased import taxes and import/export delays. This in itself could see a rise in product prices. Furthermore, a drop in the pound would exacerbate this further.
Major supermarkets in the UK have echoed this notion; claiming that there could be empty shelves and an increase in your grocery shopping bill. Bank of England governor Mark Carney had mentioned that you could see an extra 10% on top of your normal shopping spend.
Fluctuations in the supply of certain medicines is commonplace in the UK medical industry. However, a no-deal Brexit could make things worse. Pharmacies around the UK have been urging patients to order medications earlier than usual just to give them enough time to fill prescriptions and wait for a supply to come in if needed.
Whilst nothing is yet certain about Brexit there is certainly no harm in preparing for a no-deal Brexit. With breaking news dropping virtually every day now in regards to Theresa May and what should be the imminent departure from the EU only time will tell what the future has in store.