Most EU citizens will only be able to travel to the UK with a passport from Friday, when the British government will stop accepting national identity cards as a travel document.
This change, initially announced in October 2020, means that people from the European Union as well as the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland will get the same treatment at the border as travelers from the rest of the world, who must already present a passport. Valid.
The exception to this rule are EU citizens with settled status (who have been in the UK for at least five years) or previous residents (less than that period), who will be able to continue using their DNI until at least 2025.
British customs officials can start denying entry to those who do not present a valid passport from October 1, although they reserve the right to exercise their “discretion” in some cases, as noted in a statement.
In the memo, Conservative Home Secretary Priti Patel emphasized that ID cards are one of the most forged documents, and last year, more than half of the forged papers intercepted at customs were from the DNI from the European Union, European Economic Area and Switzerland.
Patel emphasized that “the UK has a proud history of opening up to the world” and the current government would continue “that tradition”.
“However, we must stop criminals who are trying to enter our country illegally using false documents,” he adds.
The Minister stresses that by putting an end to “unsafe” national identity cards, the “priority of the British people in restoring and strengthening control of the border” is being achieved.
“We’re doing this as part of our new immigration plan, which will be firm with those trying to abuse the system, and fair with those who respect the rules,” he adds.
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