To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what discussions she has had with her European counterparts on the potential merits of a short transition period from 1 October 2021 to allow for EU citizens to travel to the UK using a national ID card.
16 September 2021
The UK has left the EU, ended free movement and is aligning the entry of EU and non-EU citizens. Citizens from outside the EU (and other EEA countries and Switzerland) cannot use national identity cards for travel to the UK and EEA national identity cards are, as a rule, less secure documents than national passports, hence they dominate the figures for document abuse detected at the border. Their continued use presents a risk to border security which we are no longer obliged to accept.
All visitors from outside the EU are expected to hold a passport (and visa where necessary) and those visiting from EU countries will be expected to do the same.
We have provided almost a year’s notice for this change to allow people to plan ahead and obtain a passport, if they need to, before they travel. Our assessment is therefore a short transition period from 1 October 2021 is not appropriate and, consequently, there have been no discussions on this point with EU Member States.