Posted by on Sep 5, 2023 in LEGAL UPDATES

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Many UK passport holders entering EU countries over the summer were turned away at the boarding gate for their flights and were told that their passports were out of date despite the expiry date in their passports being at a future date.

Passports that have been issued since Brexit i.e. the new blue passports only have a validity of 10 years. This issue is only in reference to the old red passports that had European Union written on the top.

Prior to Brexit, UK passport holders could travel in and out of the EU as long as they held a valid passport. This was the case even if their passport expired the day after their return. However, since Brexit, UK passport holders who are travelling to any EU country will be denied entry 10 years after their passport was issued. In many cases these passports have a number of months left until the official expiry date, which has led to confusion.

We would advise clients who are travelling on their red UK passports to Italy and other EU countries to be very cautious. This rule will not prevent them from booking flights, checking in online and printing their boarding cards, but clients will effectively be left with this horrible surprise at the gate.

In conclusion, please can clients travelling on red UK passports make a note that the real expiry of their passports is 10 years from date of issue and not the expiry date in the passport itself.