The United Kingdom has left the European Union on 31 January 2020.
As of 1 February 2020 a transition period is being applied while the EU and the UK negotiate future arrangements. The transition period is currently scheduled to end on 31 December 2020.
During the transition period the following rules on travel will continue to apply:
- Until the end of the transition period British citizens do not require visas for travel to Germany - neither for visits nor for any other purpose. Having arrived before the end of the transition period any residence permit required for a stay after the end of the transition period or eventual other arrangements can be applied for with the local immigration office in Germany.
- Until the end of the transition period holders of British Residence Cards for EU/EEA family members do not require visas for travel to Germany provided that they accompany the Union citizen. This exemption does not apply to British Residence Cards under the EU settlement Scheme (“pre-/settled status”). Holders of these permits require a visa.
- Until the end of the transition period non-EU/non-British family members of British nationals continue to benefit from the rights in the Free Movement Directive and its visa facilitations. They have the right to obtain a visa as an EU family member free of charge and as soon as possible on the basis of an accelerated procedure. However, these rights will no longer apply once the transition period has come to an end. Travellers holding a visa issued to a non- EU/non-British family member of a British national under Freedom of Movement rules and valid beyond the end of a transition phase should then be prepared to provide evidence at the point of entry into the European Union that that they fulfil all Schengen entry requirements, e.g. possession of a valid travel document (validity of no more than ten years and valid for three months after the intended departure from the Union), proof of accommodation, employment, sufficient means of subsistence, invitation letter or return ticket, documents proving the family member’s economic situation in the country of residence or the genuine intention to leave the territory of the Member States before the expiry of the visa.
- Until the end of the transition period non-EU/non-British pupils at British schools travelling in the context of a school excursion as members of a group of school pupils accompanied by a teacher from the school in question do not require visas but may travel on a List of Travellers issued by the British Council.
- Until the end of the transition period holders of Convention Travel Documents for Refugees (1951 United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, dark blue) and holders of Stateless Person’s Travel Documents (1954 United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons, red) issued by the United Kingdom do not require visas for travel to Germany. Holders of British Certificates of Travel (black) continue to require visas.
- Non-EU/non-British staff of British companies providing so-called Van der Elst services in Germany will still be able to apply for a corresponding visa.
As of the end of the transition period any privileges under EU freedom of movement will come to an end and British citizens and their non-EU family members will be subject to all German immigration rules for third-country nationals.