France has re-introduced Airport Transit Visa (ATV) requirement for citizens of certain nationalities that holds a British long-stay visa or a British residence permit and who are travelling to Great Britain from January 1, 2021.
The nations affected are Afghanistan, Angola, Nigeria, Niger, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Central African Republic, Cuba, Congo, Chad, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Iran, Mali and Iraq amongst others.
This was disclosed by Air France via mail sent to its passengers that had booked flights slated for January 1, 20201.
The airline explained that from the said date the passengers will have to be in possession of the ATV if they want to transit through France to Great Britain.
The development was also confirmed by France, via its official website, when it stated that European right will no longer apply within the UK from 1 January 2021, which marks the end of the transition period.
- “The regulations governing the movements of UK citizens and their family members will change from that date onwards. The regulations governing the movements of some third countries nationals residing in the United Kingdom will also change from that date onwards.”
- You are a British citizen/family member of a UK citizen and you moved to France before the end of the transition period, i.e. before the 1st of January 2021: You benefit from the withdrawal agreement and can continue to reside in France.
- You are entitled to a residency permit ‘withdrawal agreement’ of either 5 years (if you have lived in France for less than 5 years) or 10 years (if you have lived in France for more than 5 years): You will need to request this residency permit online before the 1st of July 2021. You will have until the 1st of October 2021 to complete the procedure and have the actual residency permit.
- You are a British citizen, have been married or in an established relationship with a French National prior to the 1st of January 2021 and moved to France prior to that date: You benefit from the withdrawal agreement and can continue to reside in France.
- Established relationship – either a PACS or durable, duly attested relationship: If you move to France after the 1st of January 2021, you will need to apply for a Long Stay visa.
- You are the family member of a British citizen and have not moved to France by the 31st of December 2020: If you are moving to France to be with your British family member, who already resides in France or if the ties that link you with your British family member were established by the 31st of December 2020, you will need to apply for a short-term Schengen entry visa. This will be granted free of charge, on the basis of an accelerated procedure upon evidence of your relationship and of documents showing that your British family member benefited from the withdrawal agreement.
- You are a British citizen and you are moving to France after the 1st of January 2021: You cannot benefit from the withdrawal agreement and the common laws on the entry and residence of third-country nationals apply. You will therefore need to submit an application for a Long Stay visa (staying more than 90 days in France) to the French Consulate General London if you are a UK resident or to the French Consulate in the country you live in.
What it means
Passengers may still travel/apply for a visa with their British passport issued prior to the 1st of January 2021 until it expires (even if bearing the mention – European Union).
Also, according to information extracted from France’s website, British citizens do not require a visa if spending up to 90 days over a 180 days period in the Schengen area.
- “You may however be asked like any other third country nationals to justify your travel by the Immigration Officer (means of living, address of stay, medical travel insurance…).
- “British citizens, married to EU nationals, wishing to settle or reside more than 90 days in France (at the same time as their spouse or rejoining him/her) will not require a settlement visa (pursuant to the EU Directive 2004/38).”
UK citizens going to France to work for up to 90 days will not require a visa but they will need to obtain a temporary work permit, unless travelling for a sporting, cultural or scientific event, a seminar or trade show, the production and broadcast of cinematographic and audiovisual works.