Travel to and from Sweden after Brexit

We have prepared a note with some information about travel to Sweden in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.  We aim to update it as events develop.  We hope you find it helpful.

Travel to and from Sweden in the event of a No-deal Brexit

Revised to 5 October 2019

Many of the arrangements concerning travel to and from Sweden will change if the UK leaves the EU without a deal. This note is written in good faith to offer guidance to our members, and links to more detailed information. However, it is important to be aware that the Society is not an official body and has no special expertise in these matters. You should consult the UK and Swedish authorities for definitive statements. The postal address for the Swedish Embassy is: 11 Montagu Place, London W1H 2AL, the telephone number is 020 7917 6400, and the email address is ambassaden.london@gov.se

This note covers our understanding of the position. Brexit will make everything more complicated, so please let us know if you spot any errors and we will check to see if we need to amend anything. We aim to cover only the most common circumstances, but if there are other areas which you think we should also cover, please let us know. The email address is: membership@scottishswedish.org

1. Entry and exit formalities

UK citizens.

UK citizens will need a passport to enter Sweden. It must both be valid for at least 6 months beyond the date of arrival, and also must have been issued less than 9 years 6 months prior to that date. Be particularly careful if your passport is valid for more than 10 years as sometimes happens. You may wish to see the UK Government guidance about passport validity at:

https://www.gov.uk/visit-europe-brexit

You will not need a visa for a stay of less than 90 days in any period of 180 days. But you may well need a visa for longer stays or to work or study in Sweden. Check with the Swedish Embassy.

Starting in January 2021, UK citizens are, however, likely to require ETIAS authorisation before travelling to a Schengen area country of which Sweden is one.  ETIAS will be a visa waiver system which requires making an application on line before travel.  A fee of €7 will be charged in most cases.  If granted, authorisation will last until your passport expires or for 3 years, whichever is shorter. Details can be found at:

https://etias.com/

The Swedish authorities may wish to see your return ticket and to be satisfied that you have sufficient funds for your stay.

General advice for UK citizens travelling abroad after Brexit is available at:

https://www.gov.uk/visit-europe-brexit

Swedish citizens

Swedish citizens will need a valid passport to enter the UK. Note that a Swedish ID card will no longer be accepted. They will not need a visa for visits of less than 3 months. Check with the UK authorities for longer stays. Information for EU citizens planning to move to the UK after Brexit can be found by following this link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/european-temporary-leave-to-remain-in-the-uk

Swedish citizens who have been granted Settled or Pre-Settled Status and who are re-entering the UK after a short period abroad will not require a visa. However, we suggest that people in this category keep with their passport the letter from the Home Office that tells them of their status so that this can be shown in the event of questions being asked when they enter the UK. If they have been issued a new passport since they applied for Settled Status, it is important they inform the Home Office of their new passport number. The letter mentioned explains how to do this.

If you are travelling with a young person under 18 years old, or if a young person is travelling to the UK on their own, you should obtain further information by following this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/children-travelling-to-the-uk.

It is particularly important to consult the guidance if the young person’s surname differs from that of the accompanying parent/guardian.

General advice about travel to the UK for Swedish citizens is available at:

https://www.swedenabroad.se/sv/om-utlandet-f%C3%B6r-svenska-medborgare/storbritannien/reseinformation/ambassadens-reseinformation/

Travel with animals

The existing EU pet passport scheme will no longer apply. It will take up to 4 months to obtain the requisite documents. Follow this link for further details concerning both travel to EU countries and back to the UK with a pet.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/pet-travel-to-europe-after-brexit

We have not seen any reference to special provisions for guide or assistance dogs, so have to conclude they will be subject to the same rules as ordinary pets.

Your Health

The EHIC card which provides entitlement to certain health services to UK resident visitors to Sweden and Swedish visitors to the UK will not be valid after Brexit. It is possible that a broadly equivalent bilateral agreement will be reached in future, but there is no such agreement at present. Personal travel insurance will therefore be particularly important.

Swedish residents in the UK who have Settled or Pre-Settled status will continue to be eligible for NHS services. Swedish residents in the UK should also note that they are usually not eligible for health services in Sweden, except by virtue of an EHIC card, and so may wish to obtain travel insurance when visiting.

3. Your Car and Driving

Photocard, but not paper, UK Driving Licences will continue to be to be accepted for visits of up to 6 months to Sweden following Brexit. For longer visits, or if you still have a paper licence, you should obtain an International Driving Permit in advance. This can be obtained at large Post Offices. Note that there are various sorts of International Driving Permit and be careful to have the right one (“The 1968 Convention”) for Sweden. The countries that Scottish people are likely to transit on the way to Sweden, that is the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark, will also accept UK Driving Licences for short visits, though the exact time that counts as “short” varies from country to country. For details consult:

https://www.postoffice.co.uk/identity/international-driving-permit

and:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/driving-in-the-eu-after-brexit-international-driving-permits

If you are taking your car you will need a Green Card after Brexit. This can be obtained from your insurance company.

You will also need a GB sticker.

4. Your baggage.

You will no longer be entitled to carry unlimited amounts of tax-paid dutiable goods, such as tobacco and alcohol, that are for your own consumption. The UK Government is reported to have said that the old “Duty Free Allowance” will be re-instated. That covers, for example, 1 bottle of spirits. We do not know the Swedish position, but speculate that it will be the same.

Prior to Brexit, you can bring any fruit, vegetables, meat, dairy or other animal products (eg fish, eggs and honey) into the UK if you’re travelling from a country within the EU, but the rules are more restrictive for imports from elsewhere. A similar position applies in Sweden. We have been unable to find guidance concerning the position after Brexit. It may be prudent to assume the rules will be those presently applying to “other” countries in both direction. See:

https://www.gov.uk/bringing-food-animals-plants-into-uk/food

5. Your Mobile Phone

After Brexit, your mobile phone company will be permitted to charge roaming fees for using your phone in Sweden. In the past, before the EU outlawed them between EU countries, these had been high. You may wish to check in advance with your firm as some have stated they will not impose these charges.