Since Brexit came into force on January 1, 2021, travel rules have changed for UK passengers hoping to visit European Union (EU) countries such as Spain. Recently, a British woman named Sonia told Express.co.uk how she unknowingly overstayed her 90-day visa and was “detained” by Spanish authorities.
Sonia said: “I was obviously a bit naive but I wasn’t aware that I’m only allowed to stay in Spain for 90 days. I didn’t know anything had changed.”
The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), which provides advice for UK travellers, has urged Britons to “check passports” to avoid such situations.
The advice states: “Check your passport is stamped if you enter or exit the Schengen area through Spain as a visitor.
“Border guards will use passport stamps to check you’re complying with the 90-day visa-free limit for short stays in the Schengen area.
Under the latest rules, Britons can travel to countries in the Schengen area for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa.
The FCDO states: “This applies if you travel as a tourist, to visit family or friends, to attend business meetings, cultural or sports events, or for short-term studies or training.”
It continues: “If you are travelling to Spain and other Schengen countries without a visa, make sure your whole visit is within the 90-day limit.”
Visits to Schengen countries within the previous 180 days before you travel will count towards your 90 days.
This means your passport must be valid for at least three months after the day you plan to leave Spain or any other Schengen country.
The document must be less than 10 years old, and the three months you need when leaving a country must be within 10 years of the passport issue date.