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Good Holiday Ideas | July 20, 2024

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Brussels box tickers hit Brits

Brussels box tickers hit Brits

If port queues weren’t difficult enough before  going on a European holiday it is going to get worse this autumn because of even more EU box-ticking rules for Brits and all non-EU citizens, writes editor John Hill.

After October 6 all British visitors will be subjected to finger printing and face scans, which will add to the queuing misery and cost you £6.

The new scheme starts after several delays, mainly to suit France, who pushed for it to be held back until after this summer’s Paris Olympics

The new rules are being introduced for non-EU (including British) travellers to the EU except Cyprus, Ireland. Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, which are in the Schengen area but are not EU members but  expected to participate.

dover-traffic

dover-traffic

EES will register your name, type of travel document, biometric data and the date and place of entry and exit, and this data will be erased after three years. The EU claims the new system will save time as it replaces passport stamping and automates border control procedures, making travelling more efficient for the traveller.

Oh really! But it will undoubtedly cause even more delays at Dover and the Eurostar and Eurotunnel terminals in the UK. John Keefe, of Getlink, criticised the system for being designed for airports “without any consideration for the nature of transport across the Channel”.

More bad news for British tourists and business travellers returning home to even more queues because our UK Customs men are tasked with tightening up on those returning with more drinks, smokes and cosmetics than they are legally allowed. And customs officials warn that cheats face fines up to £20,000.