With everything that is going on, it is easy to forget that the UK leaves the EU on 1 January 2021. However, if you are planning to go abroad to play golf in mainland Europe next year, and let’s face it who isn’t, it’s worth using this time to look at the new advice and regulations.

Los Naranjos Golf Club, Marbella Costa Del Sol, Spain

Los Naranjos Golf Club, Marbella
Costa Del Sol, Spain

The British Government’s own website has the latest information and you can sign up for email alerts as the deadline day approaches.

  1. Dust off your passport and check the expiry date.  If you have a British passport you will need to have at least six months left on your passport and it must have been issued within the last 10 years.
  2. The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) may not be valid from 1 January 2021. You will need to take out travel insurance with sufficient healthcare cover, including cover for existing medical conditions and any activities you plan to do. Don’t forget to check your policy covers any damage to or loss of golf clubs.
  3. If you are planning to drive in Europe you may need an International Driving Permit. Each permit costs £5.50 and is available from certain branches of the Post Office, it only takes a few minutes. If you’d prefer not to bother we can easily arrange private airport and golf transfers.
  4. If you are planning a self-drive holiday in Europe, contact your UK car insurance provider to see if you need a physical Green Card. Some providers may charge a small fee to cover administration costs.
  5. When you cross a border you may have to show your return ticket and show that you have enough money for your stay. When you are queueing either in your car or at an airport you may need to head to a separate lane from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens.
  6. You may also need a GB sticker. You may find your insurance provider sends one with the Green Card.
  7. If you play the golf round of your life, think twice before texting all your friends. Rules around mobile data roaming are changing . From 1 January 2021, the guarantee of free mobile phone roaming throughout the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway will end check with your phone operator to find out about any roaming charges you might get from 1 January 2021.

A new law means that you’re protected from getting mobile data charges above £45 without you knowing.

Aigua Blava Hotel****, Begur Costa Brava, Spain

Aigua Blava Hotel****, Begur
Costa Brava, Spain

Once you reach £45, you need to opt in to spend more so that you can continue using the internet while you’re abroad. Your phone operator will tell how you can do this.

  1. If you’re a tourist, you will not need a visa for short trips to most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You’ll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any 180-day period.
  2. Different rules will apply to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania. If you visit these countries, visits to other EU countries will not count towards the 90-day total.
  3. Most importantly, your consumer rights will not change from 1 January 2021. If your travel is cancelled or delayed you may be able to claim a refund or compensation. Check our terms and conditions