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Will Brexit affect travel and its prices within the EU for British citizens?

The has been a lot of talk about Brexit and whether Britons should leave the EU. One of the questions is whether Brexit will affect travel prices within the EU for British citizens. If so, what can people living in the UK expect to see and how will the travel prices change.

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Passengers boarding the plane, to Lithuania at Luton Airport. Photo by Karina Girnyte.

With the EU referendum approaching fast, British prime minister David Cameron announced the date – 23rd of June, 2016, there has been more and more discussion of the consequences of leaving the EU for British citizens. Many have discussed the safety of Britain without the support of Europe and Britain’s political relations. One major aspect is also how will Brexit influence Britain’s economical prospects such as travel prices. Travel prices are expected to go up with Britain no longer sharing EU travel laws and prices.

Martin Kooper, bank assistant from London said; “I would guess that it would affect prices, maybe not in a dramatic way, but I would expect some fluctuation. This would probably be due to having to reconfigure tax  laws that are currently being agreed to by the UK as a condition for being in the EU. Given the effect the UK leaving the EU could have for the rest of the member states, I wouldn’t be surprised if say airlines based in those countries hiked their rates for inbound/outbound UK flights, as well as ferry and train prices.”

If Britain votes to leave the EU then it can withdraw after two years after telling the European Council that it wants to go. This means that as quickly as two years British citizens will no longer enjoy cheap flights within Europe to countries such as Italy, Spain, and France provided by travel companies such as Ryanair and EasyJet.

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The effects of Brexit on travel within EU:

Brexit will have many effects on the British citizens, as well as the other European countries. Some will influence travel prices but also travel availability and arrangements. ABTA and Deloitte report shed some light on how Brexit will affect travel for British travellers.For example, British citizens will not be able to travel as freely around Europe as they are accustomed to.

If Britain leaves the EU, the Shengen Agreement made in 1985 by European Economic community will no longer apply to British citizens. The agreement which abolished visa policy control and internal border controls within EU area for European citizens will greatly affect the way British citizens will have travel. This will possibly mean that British travellers will have to pay for visas once more to travel within the EU.

Another effect will be an increase in phone bills during travel. The European travel rates will no longer be provided by British phone companies and making calls, texting or connecting to the internet will cost a lot more. One of the greatest effects will be a decrease in air passenger benefits.

As part of the EU, British travellers enjoy the safety of EU travel laws, such as insurance and cancellation policies. A member of the EU can claim up £400 plus expenses if their flight is delayed by more than three hours. This will no longer be accessible for Britain travels if Brexit succeeds as well as the European Health insurance card.

The prices will stay the same:

The Abta-Deloitte report stated that: “No one knows for certain what a post-EU UK would look like.” Interrail.eu- a travel company that sells train tickets to 33 European countries tweeted a similar opinion.

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The prices will increase:

EasyJet chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall said the EU was behind the fall in air fares across Europe over the past two decades, and that before its creation air travel was “reserved for the elite”.

Former TUI boss Peter Long also warned of the effects Brexit would have. “For our customers, that means higher holiday prices and less spending money,” he said.

“If the UK were to exit the EU, Monarch would view the outcomes for the travel sector as very negative, not least because of the uncertainty that would follow in the aftermath,” Said Andrew Swaffield, chief executive from budget airline Monarch.

From looking at ATBA and Deloitte report and travel agency’s statements its clear that the future of travel will be affected if Britain decides to leave the EU. However the future of travel prices is still unclear. More discussion will be seen in following months to EU referendum.

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