What does Brexit mean for you? Shopping, mobile calls, flying, driving …

Will I see prices rise at the supermarket?

There had been warnings that products such as meats, dairy and cereals sold in the UK could have faced tariffs of as much as 50% under World Trade Organisation rules. But the deal means there will be no tariffs on products sold between the UK and the EU, allowing companies on both sides to keep trading in a similar way to now. This should prevent price rises and keep shelves stocked.However, there will be considerably more bureaucracy. And where there is red tape, there is inevitably a cost incurred to negotiate it. The UK’s food chain could well be “slower, more complex and more expensive for months if not years”, according to the Cold Chain Federation.

What of travel to EU countries?

Rules for business trips and holidays will change as free movement of people between the EU and UK comes to an end. UK citizens will be allowed to stay in the EU for 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa, and the same will apply for EU citizens in the UK.

UK citizens wishing to travel to Europe should have at least six months left on their passport before they travel. From 2022, they will have to pay for a visa-waiver scheme to visit many EU countries.The European Commission says the choice to end free movement “inevitably means that business travel between the EU and the UK will no longer be as easy as it currently is”. People are advised to check with the member state they are travelling to.

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Will I notice any difference when I land in Paris or Frankfurt?British passport holders will no longer be able to use the EU passport queue at airports and borders.What about the cost of mobile phone calls abroad?Free mobile phone data-roaming will end. However, UK customers may notice little change. The four main providers in the UK – EE, 02, Vodafone and Three – have said they have no plans to reintroduce roaming charges.May I take my pet abroad?The pet passport scheme between the UK and the EU ends on 1 January. However, Britain will be given “part two listed” status, allowing pets to travel within EU borders. Owners will need to ensure their animal has been vaccinated against rabies and microchipped, so that they can obtain an animal health certificate, which reportedly might take up to a month to organise. The new certificate must be obtained at least 10 days before travelling, andwill be valid for only four months and only for a single trip.
Will my European health insurance card still work?All EHIC cards issued before the end of 2020 will be valid – but only until the date of their expiry. The UK is to issue a new card called the global health insurance card which, like the EHIC, covers chronic or existing illnesses and routine maternity care as well as emergencies. The Brexit agreement says that any specialised treatment, such as cancer treatment, “must be subject to a prior agreement between the insured person and the unit providing the treatment”.

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What about driving in EU member states?

Motorists with a driving licence issued in the UK will not need to use an international driving permit in the EU, as had previously been thought likely. However, they will need a car insurance green card to prove that they are insured in the UK. Watch out for this, as it reportedly can take up to six weeks to obtain.

Will my professional UK qualifications be recognised by other EU member states?

Not automatically. A framework is being drawn up that might help facilitate some form of mutual recognition in the future. But it may turn out to be the case that each UK qualification body ends up having to negotiate a bilateral agreement with its counterpart in each respective EU member state.