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Will Brexit cause layover issues from US to Europe?

Looking to travel in September from Seattle to Paris & best prices have layovers in London or Manchester. Recent reading on Brexiit expressed concerns that UK & Europe may not have agreements in place for flights between the two when it goes into effect.

My questions:

1) Should we expect to have to go through UK customs if we layover there?

2) Should we be concerned that the 2nd leg of the flight might be canceled & we’d have to find alternate transportation from UK to Paris?

Thanks in advance for the collective wisdom.

Posted by
8293 posts

Who could possibly know what the situation will be next September?

Posted by
4677 posts

The U.K. is due to leave the EU at the end of March, which may or may not happen, but if we do leave with no deal (worst case scenario), then I would hope that we don’t have 6 months with no flights as you are suggesting!

It has been agreed that UK airlines can fly into Europe from the UK, but they can’t operate flights within the EU eg Paris to Lisbon.

Posted by
1833 posts

1) No

2) No

I'd be more worried about the real happening right now US govt. shutdown rather than a hypothetical event nine month in the future no one knows about.

Posted by
1217 posts

The UK has never been part of the 'borderless' Schengen immigration and customs area even though the UK and greater EU have had generally reciprocal travel rights.

While you can never entirely predict the future, odds are very good that policies leisure travelers will be the same for all practical purposes then as they are now because neither area wants to lose the economic benefits of the immigration and transit process as it is now.

Posted by
9592 posts

I'm scheduled to fly from the UK into Schengen three weeks after the current planned Brexit day.

I'm not worried.

Posted by
2074 posts

Nobody knows what might happen at the moment. But september is pretty far away from March 29th so I wouldn't be too worried, any major problems should have been sorted out by then.

Posted by
3171 posts

Since nobody can predict the future, why not fly directly to Paris or if you with to have a layover, do so at a major EU airport.

Posted by
102 posts

Thank you for those who provided thoughtful responses. I'd love to book direct flights but they are a minimum of $300 more per person which puts them nearly out of range. Some options currently available bring us into mainland Europe but with very tight layovers. I'm checking sites nearly daily to see what new options are available.

Any other words of wisdom will be appreciated.

Posted by
3317 posts

Words of wisdom: stop worrying about what you can’t control and no one can predict. Plan your trip.

Posted by
25519 posts

Don't sweat the small stuff. For tourists this is small stuff.

Posted by
2074 posts

I wouldn't worry about a short layover somewhere in Europe. If the airline didn't think it was a reasonable connection, they wouldn't sell it. And if your flight from Seattle is very delayed, there will be plenty of later flights to Paris you can be rebooked to.

I would probably choose the direct flight, I think it's worth a bit of money not having to change somewhere. But you might have a different opinion. And if you do, don't worry about a connection in Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Reykjavik or any other major European airport.

Posted by
769 posts

Fly into Ireland and then to the Continent. I always try to avoid flying into the UK.

Posted by
4853 posts

Thanks for returning with your decision. Regardless of what you pay for a ticket, and even if YOU can't change it, the airlines can change the routing. The question is whether they'll change it to something awful, or are willing to refund your money because they can't afford to comply with new rules (or lack of rules.)

I avoid changing flights in Heathrow because of the frequent need to change terminals and thus go through long security lines a second, or even third time. Do make sure that your cost decisions include all fees for boarding passes, seats, and so on. It's easy to see an inadequate view of a "price."

Posted by
1217 posts

The airline major players will also generally offer travel waivers for free rebooking/no change fee options when it seems like the odds are good of major flight disruptions (example- summer hurricanes or winter blizzards in an area) or other things that might impact travel and safety in an area. For example, when I was checking my Delta Skymiles account earlier today, they had posted this travel waiver for Port Au Prince, Haiti because of political unrest:

https://www.delta.com/us/en/advisories/other-alerts/pap-civil-unrest