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Check passports ahead of Brexit deadline, Govt says

Check passports ahead of Brexit deadline, Govt says

The Gibraltar Government has urged citizens to ensure they are in possession of a valid passport ahead of Brexit, as it warned that the use of Gibraltar ID cards for EU travel purposes may not be allowed in a no-deal scenario.

In a statement No.6 Convent Place explained that in November the EU and the United Kingdom concluded the terms of an agreement for the orderly departure of the UK from the bloc.

Gibraltar was part of that agreement.

The Withdrawal Agreement includes a transitional phase until the end of 2020, which also covers Gibraltar.

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This agreement is subject to ratification by the UK Parliament and by the European Parliament.

In the meantime, planning continues for the eventuality that the UK and Gibraltar leave the European Union without this agreement.

In the event of a no deal Brexit the use of Gibraltar ID cards, for EU travel purposes, may no longer be allowed, the Gibraltar Government said.

“The Government urges all citizens to make provisions to be in possession of a valid passport as at 29th March 2019,” it said.

The Government published in September last year the guidance notes on passports.

This guidance note states that if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the changes to the entry requirements for British passport holders, including those with passports issued by the Crown Dependencies (Guernsey, Isle of Man and Jersey) and Gibraltar, travelling to Schengen area countries will be applicable with effect from 30 March 2019.

British passport holders, including holders of passports issued by Gibraltar, will be considered third country nationals under the Schengen Border Code and will therefore need to comply with different rules to enter and travel around the Schengen area.

According to the Schengen Border Code, third country passports must have been issued within the last 10 years on the date of arrival in a Schengen country.

Additionally, they must have at least three months validity remaining on the date of intended departure from the last country visited in the Schengen area. Because third country nationals can remain in the Schengen area for 90 days the actual check carried out is that the passport has at least 6 months validity remaining on the date of arrival.

Adult British passport holders planning to travel to the Schengen area after March 29, 2019 must make sure their passport is no older than nine years and six months and has at least six months validity remaining on the date of arrival.

For example, if you intend to travel to the Schengen area on March 30, 2019 your passport should have an issue date on or after October 1, 2009 and a validity remaining of at least six months.

Under-16s, holders of a five-year British child passport must check the expiry date and make sure that there will be at least six months validity remaining on the date of travel.

For example, a child planning to travel to the Schengen area on March 30, 2019 should have a passport with an expiry date on or after October 1, 2019.

The following countries are part of the Schengen area: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Passport holders should check the entry requirements for other countries that are in the EU but not in the Schengen area.

For further information please contact: Passport Section, Civil Status & Registration Office: +350 20051727, passports.csro@gibraltar.gov.gi

Application forms are available online from the Civil Status & Registration Office portal at www.gibraltar.gov.gi and from the Passport Section, Civil Status & Registration Office, Joshua Hassan House, Line Wall Road. Counter hours are from 8:30am to 3:00pm, Monday to Friday.

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