The Inevitable ‘Brexit’

It’s going to happen, we all know it, we’ve all but prepared for it to happen, a matter of when not if, and no matter how shocked or delighted by the outcome of the vote last year, it is happening.
Today, I read an article in The Independent, which discussed that the Supreme Court has ordered that Article 50 will now have to be voted for by MP’s, which scuppers Prime Minister, Theresa May’s plans to launch the  Brexit plan unilaterally. So much for a democracy, am I right!

I know, I know. We all got a vote, so yes democracy clearly works. But for who?

Brexit, should never have been an if we vote leave, we leave type of vote. You simply cannot put this kind of decision on the normal people of this country. Especially when both Leave and Remain campaigners sprouted lies and misinformed the public. Justice has been done and the vote to trigger Article 50 is now down to the MP’s. You know, the people we vote for to make the right decisions on our behalf.

So as a traveller, what impact will this have on me and others like me?

As many of you will know Theresa May’s willingness to make it a ‘Hard Brexit’ will leave plenty of young people disillusioned. No Schengen for UK nationals. Which of course will make moving around Europe far more difficult and expensive as we’ll all need to apply for visas regardless of how long we want to stay. 

Currently, UK citizens can stay in a country in the Schengen Zone for up to 90 days before having to apply for a working visa. Something that works for many, if not most travellers. Emilly and I are planning on spending closer to 4 months in Norway, which of course means we’ll have to apply for a working visa for our last month, currently this costs nothing for a member of the EU. Great, right!

Here I have compiled a list of the biggest problems travellers will face due to Brexit.

1. The cost of travelling – You may have noticed that following the Brexit vote, the Pound dropped dramatically against the Dollar and the Euro. This simply means our money will not go as far as it once would. £500 will more likely be 500 Euros soon enough, whereas once it could have gotten you 600/700 Euros. So for us travellers, the cost of our hostels, trains, flights and even food will go up. Following today’s hearing by the Supreme Court the pound is set to rise significantly. Up until Article 50 is invoked and we shall see the affect it has on the currency.

2. The European Health Insurance Card – or the EHIC. You might own/have owned one of these in the past. These cards have ensured that Britons travelling throughout the Europe Union member states were entitled to free/discounted health care should the worst happen. Following the Brexit vote what would that mean for our EHIC’s? Well an agreement will have to be negotiated between the UK and The EU, most likely we will be allowed to use these so long as EU nationals are allowed access to use our own equivalent health care, with Ms. May opting for her ‘Hard Brexit’, what is the likelihood an agreement can be reached?

3. Roaming charges – One of the latest bills the EU are looking to secure is the abolishment of roaming charges on mobile phones by June 2017. A benefit for every traveller surely? What’s to happen next for Brits is anyone’s guess.

4. Working in Europe – One of the biggest points the Leave Campaign used to secure voters was to have more restrictions on people from Europe coming in to the UK and finding work. If there is to be a ‘Hard Brexit’ then that will surely come in to affect. Meaning EU nationals will need work visas in order to work in Britain.

The same goes for us Brits in Europe. So those of you, like me, hoping to go travelling for an extended period of time and funding it by working on bars, in hostels etc… will be faced with the added stress of applying for work visas in every single country you visit.

In summary, the affect of Brexit is still a little hazy, it is going to happen, just how hard a Brexit we get remains to be seen, and as a traveller I sure hope that Freedom of Movement is still included in our rights, as a future without it is a step backward for society. The only solace I take from it, is that we will still have two years from the moment Article 50 is set in motion to live, travel and work in Europe.

If you have any comments, feel free to let me know what you think. Keep it civil, keep it friendly and have a great day.

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Much love and a travelling hug.

MattyTheTraveller.

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