How will Brexit impact on YOUR holidays and travel in the short and long term?

So what will happen to your holidays? In the short term it’s going to Costa packet in the resorts as the pound slumps in a once-in-a-generation Brexit1 nosedive. If you’re in the eurozone2 any time soon (and many of us will be after the flight from destinations affected by terror threats), the US dollar areas, or anywhere else where the exchange rate has crashed, it’s bad news. That San Miguel or Bud just cost more. Relative costs in your resort will only be going one way as you simply get much less foreign currency for your pound.

Exchange rates of 1 to ‘ 1.19 and $1.35 are painful and your spending power overseas is seriously diminished. But should you need to go to the cashpoint in your resort more often as you’re spending more money, you can. Nothing changes to your bank access.

PA How Will Brexit Impact On YOUR Holidays And Travel In The Short And Long Term? Take note: the pound has slumped against the euro after the Brexit vote

Other than that walloping to your wallet, it really is or should be business as usual for holidaymakers while the nation negotiates its withdrawal from the EU over the next two years. Planes will still fly to Europe, ferries will still sail across the Channel, Eurostar and Le Shuttle will still whizz under it: the travel world will keep turning. Nothing significant should change.

But once we’re completely out in the medium to long term?

Well, that’s an entirely different matter and involves an awful lot of speculation and guesswork and depends at what levels the pound stabilises. If it stays low, the cost of hotel rooms to tour operators will rise, and no doubt be passed on the the consumer.

Like everything else, though, we are heading into uncharted waters.

Firstly, the Government must decide which travel-related EU regulations and rules it will retain and which it will not, though of course like everything else, nothing will happen overnight.

Read more: now Spain wants Gibraltar back3

And in pre-EU days British people did of course go on Discount Holidays © holiday to countries that are now in the EU – before it was created as the old EEC in 1957, and before we joined in 1973. But needless to say things have moved on somewhat since then. These days, holidays especially by air – are available to everyone at reasonable prices; years ago they were largely the preserve of the well-off.

Brexit breakdown: areas you need to be aware of

AIR TRAVEL: easily the most contentious part of Brexit4 for travellers.

The independent UK will need to negotiate how our airlines operate in the European Common Aviation Area (ECAA), which is in effect a single market between the EU and some external countries such as Norway. It was designed to offer new opportunities for carriers and wider choice for consumers by liberalising the air transport industry, allowing any company from an ECAA member state to fly between any ECAA member state’s airports – so a “foreign” airline can fly another country’s domestic services. It’s been a huge success and has seen UK travellers benefiting from competition on routes, especially from the no-frills airlines.

Getty How Will Brexit Impact On YOUR Holidays And Travel In The Short And Long Term? Sky fall: the EU single market for aviation has seen air fares come down thanks to competition

If we don’t retain a place at the ECAA table it could lead to reduced competition and routes and higher air fares; some industry analysts warn of rises of up to 30%. The price of aviation fuel is also a factor. It’s priced in dollars and could get more expensive with weaker sterling, but airlines normally hedge their fuel purchases well in advance so there really shouldn’t be any short term changes to air fares from that. EU legislation on flight delay compensation is particularly robust.

Trips to and from the EU and on EU carriers will still be covered, but it remains to be seen what rules the Government will impose on British airlines. I suspect it will end up being a bit more tricky all round to get compensation, or it may be far less generous than at present.

*HEALTHCARE: you should of course never travel without suitable insurance, but the back-up of free medical cover via the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) – which gives EU members the right to health treatment in any EU country – may well go. Would the Government be able to negotiate a future equivalent. Who knows? Just make sure you are fully insured.

*PASSPORTS AND VISAS: again, basically no-one knows whether visa-free travel will remain for British citizens in Europe but I expect it will stay visa-free.

For the moment you ares free to move between the UK and the EU as you were before the vote

As for the physical passports, I envisage a return to some sort of British blue one at some point.

How Will Brexit Impact On YOUR Holidays And Travel In The Short And Long Term? Stamping ground: will we see the return of a blue British passport?

It will of course be hi-tech, secure and chipped just like our current ones and it makes sense for those to remain valid and be replaced as they expire, just as the present purple ones replaced the blue ones back in the 90s. Passports are not issued by the EU, but by the UK Government, so we can do as we wish with them. It makes sense, though, to retain the common EU size and standard security.

*AIRPORT IMMIGRATION: I reckon ultimately we will have, like the USA does, separate queues for citizens and non-citizens. That could take some sorting out at the airports, given everything is currently geared to EU and non-EU.

*PHONES: the EU has done a great job of curbing mobile operators’ rip-off roaming charges.

It’s prompted the operators to bring in some degree of self-policing and hats off to Three, which leads the way at binning roaming charges in the likes of France, Spain, Italy and the USA. How it will pan out in the long term remains to be seen. Vote with your wallets if your operator raises roaming fees in Europe and move your contract.

How Will Brexit Impact On YOUR Holidays And Travel In The Short And Long Term? Good call: the EU has brought down mobile roaming rates for UK travellers

*CONSUMER RIGHTS: the new European Package Travel Directive due to come in force on July 1, 2018 covers not only traditional package holidays, but also helps to protect the millions who book other forms of combined travel such as ”a self-chosen combination on a website of a flight plus hotel or car rental” and offers much more comprehensive and clearer protection. The non-EU Britain will have to choose whether to adopt its own version – and looking at the wider picture, the UK would have to seriously consider setting up parallel travel protection regulations similar to the EU ones to maintain consumer confidence in the travel market.

*DUTY FREE: well it’s going to be goodbye to the booze cruise with your car boot loaded with cheap French vin et biere.

But the Brexit5 bonus should see the return of duty free, so you can buy a bottle of cheap whisky or gin instead. Marvellous.

Getty How Will Brexit Impact On YOUR Holidays And Travel In The Short And Long Term? Flag daze: how will our holidays pan out in now Britain has voted to leave the EU?

Mirror Travel comment

There’s an old expression ”Be careful what you wish for. Well, the Brexiters have got their wish and we’ll see how our hard-earned holidays pan out. No doubt there will be a lot of uncertainty, and perhaps the staycation market will get a lift as more Brits choose to Discount Holidays © holiday at home while the dust settles. Hopefully, though, we won’t go back to the days when only the well-off could travel abroad.

However, airlines and hotels will still have lots seats and rooms to fill, and the British travel sector is hugely important to many EU nations. Brits spend big on their holidays and nobody will want to lose our lucrative custom, so they’ll need to they’ll need to find ways to keep us travelling. Europe’s a fantastic Discount Holidays © holiday destination and travel brings people closer.

Don’t let Brexit6 put up a brick wall between you and our wonderful neighbours.

Read more: sterling tanks on Brexit vote7

References

  1. ^ Brexit (www.mirror.co.uk)
  2. ^ eurozone (www.mirror.co.uk)
  3. ^ Read more: now Spain wants Gibraltar back (www.mirror.co.uk)
  4. ^ Brexit (www.mirror.co.uk)
  5. ^ Brexit (www.mirror.co.uk)
  6. ^ Brexit (www.mirror.co.uk)
  7. ^ Read more: sterling tanks on Brexit vote (www.mirror.co.uk)

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