Immigration and travel

Check, Act, Ready for immigration and travel changes following the end of the transition period

Brexit and the Transition Period

The UK left the EU on January 31st 2020, thereby entering a transition period where there were not many changes. The transition period will end on December 31st 2020, where rules will change.

The information here will help to support your planning following our CHECK, ACT, READY guide.


There will be changes to immigration rules to and from the UK and the EU. Below you will find information on these changes, summarised by group most relevant to you.

UK students studying abroad

The withdrawal agreement protects the rights of UK citizens in the EU during the transition period. If you are abroad in your host country on before the end of the transition period (December 31st 2020), your rights to stay in the country will remain unchanged but you may need to register with the local authority in your host country for administrative purposes. The withdrawal agreement states in Article 10(2):

[Persons falling under points (a) and (b) of Article 3(2) of Directive 2004/38/EC] whose residence was facilitated by the host State in accordance with its national legislation before the end of the transition period in accordance with Article 3(2) of that Directive shall retain their right of residence in the host State in accordance with this Part, provided that they continue to reside in the host State thereafter.

If you are to go to your host country after the end of the transition period, you may be required to obtain a visa for your studies.

Immigration requirement

There may be new rules in your host country. If you are in your host country already when the transition period ends, your rights are covered by the withdrawal agreement, meaning you should be able to continue residing in your host country without doing anything further.

Refer to the UK Gov. Transition Website for confirmation on what you need to do to secure your residency for your placement, if any. Below will provide you with the direct country links.

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EU/EEA CountryLink to country guide by GOV.UK 
AustriaGOV.UK Austria 
BelgiumGOV.UK Belgium 


GOV.UK Bulgaria 
CroatiaGOV.UK Croatia 
CyprusGOV.UK Cyprus 
Czech RepublicGOV.UK Czech Republic 
DenmarkGOV.UK Denmark 
EstoniaGOV.UK Estonia 
FinlandGOV.UK Finland 
FranceGOV.UK France 
GermanyGOV.UK Germany 
GreeceGOV.UK Greece 
HungaryGOV.UK Hungary 
IrelandGOV.UK Ireland 
ItalyGOV.UK Italy 
LatviaGOV.UK Latvia 
LuthuaniaGOV.UK Lithuania 
LuxembourgGOV.UK Luxembourg 
MaltaGOV.UK Malta 
The NetherlandsGOV.UK The Netherlands 
NorwayGOV.UK Norway 
PolandGOV.UK Poland 
PortugalGOV.UK Portugal 
RomaniaGOV.UK Romania 
SlovakiaGOV.UK Slovakia 
SloveniaGOV.UK Slovenia 
SpainGOV.UK Spain 
SwedenGOV.UK Sweden 
SwitzerlandGOV.UK Switzerland 
EU/EEA/Swiss students studying abroad
Immigration requirementYou can find more information on the Immigration and Visas webpage.Are you?



During the transition period, there are no changes to travel rights for UK/EU/EEA/Swiss nationals. This will change on January 31st 2020. This does not apply if you are an Irish citizen because the UK and Ireland have a separate agreement called the 'Common Travel Area' that means travel citizens of the UK and the Republic of Ireland can continue as it does currently. More information can be found on the UK Gov website. If you will travel to another country in the UK/EU/EEA, you will need to know the following

UK students abroad
PassportYou must ensure that you have 6 months on your passport

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Travel InsuranceYou will continue to be covered by UCLs insurer for your placement. If you travel to a country that is not your host country, you will need to purchase seperate travel insurance

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DrivingIf you drive in your host country with your UK driving licence, you might need to obtain an International Driving Permit (IDP). Check you host country rules.Are you?
Mobile RoamingBefore the end of the transition period, free roaming is guaranteed across the EU and other countries. This will no longer be guaranteed. You will need to check with your mobile operator to confirm if free roaming will end for you phone.

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EU/EEA/Swiss students
PassportYou must ensure that your passport is valid if this is your chosen ID. Below informaiton on national ID cards

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National ID CardThe UK may not allow national ID cards to be used to enter the UK, this has not yet been decided. Further information is available of the GOV.UK website.

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Travel InsuranceYou will continue to be covered by UCLs insurer for your placement. If you travel to a country that is not your host country, you will need to purchase seperate travel insurance

Are you?


Students abroad when the transition period ends are secured under the withdrawal agreement and therefore their EHIC card should remain valid, but there may be specific rules aorund this. You must be sure to read more information on the GOV.UK website.