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Home Office urges people with less than six months on passport to get a new one ahead of Brexit

Manchester Evening News logo Manchester Evening News 18/09/2019 Saffron Otter
Home Office warns travellers about passport expiry dates © PA Home Office warns travellers about passport expiry dates

A million people will receive a text message from the Home Office encouraging them to renew their passports early ahead of Brexit.

New passport validity rules will apply for travel to most European countries if the UK goes ahead with a no-deal Brexit at the end of October.

The texts, part of the government's 'Get Ready for Brexit' campaign, will be sent to those who provided their mobile number when they applied for their current passport.

But even if you don't get a text, it's worth checking your passport validity as there's so much up in the air around leaving the European Union on October 31.

The first batch of texts have already been sent out, and the rest will be sent in clusters over the next few days.

a close up of text on a white surface: Despite the Brexit delay, people have been issued British passports without the words 'European Union' © PA Despite the Brexit delay, people have been issued British passports without the words 'European Union'

What will change?

Currently, UK passport holders can travel to EU countries right up to the point of your passport expiry date.

If we leave the EU with a deal, current arrangements will continue until the end of the transitional period - likely to be in 2020.

If we leave the EU with a no-deal, two new rules will apply:

  • Firstly, adults and children will need to have at least six months left on their passport to travel to most EU countries.

  • Secondly, any extra months on a passport over 10 years may not count towards the six months needed. A passport may have extra months if the holder renewed their previous passport before it expired.

a large passenger jet flying over a body of water: Adults and children will need to have at least six months left on their passport to travel to most EU countries © Getty Images Adults and children will need to have at least six months left on their passport to travel to most EU countries

List of countries affected

There will be 34 countries affected under the new passport ruling:

Andorra

Austria

Belgium

Bulgaria

Croatia

Cyprus

Czech Republic

Denmark

Estonia

Finland

France

Germany

Greece

Hungary

Iceland

Italy

Latvia

Liechtenstein

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Malta

Monaco

Netherlands

Norway

Poland

Portugal

Romania

San Marino

Slovakia

Slovenia

Spain

Sweden

Switzerland

Vatican City

It will normally take up to three weeks to renew a passport, but it may take longer if more information is needed.

You can check your passport for travel to Europe after Brexit here .

It costs £75.50 to renew or replace your passport if you apply online or £85 if you fill out a paper form.

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