If You’ve Ever Wanted to Travel to Europe, NOW Is the time!!!
If you’ve traveled to the UK in the last decade or so, your wallet was sure to take a hit. With the British Pound reaching at times upwards of double the dollar, a pint of beer alone could set you back $15!! For this reason alone, many Americans doing budget travel have tried to steer clear of visiting places in Great Britain.
For many travelers, the lure of things like Big Ben, Stonehenge and Nessy herself just wasn’t powerful enough to choke down the costs of seeing those sites. Even the Best Tips for Penny Pinching in London didn’t save you from the expensive British Pound.
But that all could be changing RIGHT NOW.
(Ready to take advantage of the effects of Brexit and travel? Pin it for later!)
On June 23rd, the UK voted and with just the narrowest of wins, decided they’ve had enough….they are ready for a Brexit.
Now, with the UK officially ready to leave the European Union, this just may be the best time in recent history for travelers to not only visit places like Britain, Scotland and Wales, but actually all of Europe.
What is Brexit
Brexit is not the newest name for a celebrity couple’s name mashed up.
Brexit, in the most simplified terms, is that the UK has voted, as of June 23rd to leave the European Union.
Europe has changed drastically in the years since 1993 when the European Union started. Economics have become a roller coaster ride, with countries such as Great Britain and Germany taking the brunt of bailing all their neighbors out and the most recent issues of immigration control are a heated discussion.
In short, Britain is ready to take back their sovereignty and wants to take care of themselves, and only themselves.
Brexit and Travel: How does it effect you?
Again, simply put? TRAVEL NOW!
The biggest reason if you’ve ever thought about putting on a kilt and not feeling out of place, drinking a spot of tea next to the Queen, sipping a scotch straight from its homeland or even playing thespian with Shakespeare is because the cost of travel to the UK is now cheaper than ever.
As Great Britain (and the world) is figuring out what to do with itself now that they’ve voted to leave the EU, the British Pound is plummeting. The vote is wreaking havoc on the stock exchange, but for travelers abroad, they are seeing the British Pound at its lowest point in the past 30 years, meaning travel within the UK is more affordable than ever!
(Need some inspiration? Check out the most Picturesque Towns in Europe)
Travel To the Rest of Europe
The British Pound isn’t the only currency losing value. The Euro is declining, with a suspected continued down-slide as well. For Americans, this means they are seeing prices much more favorable to the dollar all across Europe, not just within the UK.
Long Term Travel Effects
Nobody knows exactly what will happen in the future to the EU. Many suspect that the UK has set the stage for other disgruntled EU members to finally make a break for it as well. While financially speaking for (non EU) travelers, this may continue to be a good thing, there are strong possibilities that not everything is going to be so great in Travel Land in the future.
Cheap Airfare No More?
One of the beauties that came out of the EU was budget airlines! There was a removal of the previous bi-lateral restrictions on air service agreements and therefore stronger competition for routes and airliners took place. Currently, members of the EU are free to fly anywhere within the EU. However, with Brexit, air services and bi-lateral agreements will need to be re-looked at. It is uncertain if this will have an effect on our favorite cheap airliners such as RyanAir and Easyjet.
Customs and Border Control
In The UK: If you’ve ever traveled in and out of London Heathrow, you know that as the biggest airport in the world, it is one busy and crowded place. Take those 200,000 plus passengers A DAY, put them into customs lines and let the headaches begin. Currently, all EU members can quickly go through the customs and immigration stations in the UK, but if Great Britain leaves the EU, this means that all those passengers, minus UK citizens, will need to go through customs. Get ready for lines that will take you HOURS to wind through!
Border Control Throughout Europe: Pretending that the UK is not going to be the only country to leave the EU in coming years, there is a good possibility that we will see a reinstatement of border control. Currently, you can pass through most European countries with no issues or passport stops. Often times, you don’t even know you’ve crossed a border until you see a new language on a street sign!
Especially with the current Schengen Agreement, people come and go within EU countries freely, but if countries start pulling out of the agreement and the EU, long border lines, passport control and possibly even Visa requirements may be seen.
The Takeaway for Travelers
We simply aren’t sure what effects Brexit is going to have for Europe, and the world, in the coming years.
While RIGHT NOW is the best time to travel due to the exchange rates all throughout Europe, experts suspect that it will take a while for the economies and currencies to recover. Therefore, even by next summer (2017), you should still expect for great exchange rates for the dollar and limited long-term effects (border control, budget airlines, etc) to have already been put into place.
So, pack your bags and get travelin’!!!
If you’ve ever wanted to affordably travel Europe, it looks like this may just be the best time to hop the pond and start site-seeing!
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~Is the cost efficiency of traveling within Europe intriguing but not sure how to pay for a flight to/from??
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Where will you be heading to Europe now that it is more affordable than ever?
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It’s going to be a nightmare -I live in the UK and can;t believe this decision. I am also a travel blogger so border controls are going to be time consuming. What if we have to get a visa for each country?
With the votes so split, it has been fascinating to hear both sides from the Brits who both were in favor and opposed. Do you think border controls (at least in the UK) will happen? I feel like everything right now is a guessing game as to what will take place eventually. All I know is that the $ is strong which means I better take a trip!
Britain has visa free access to 175 countries worldwide. I suspect we know a thing or two about negotiating visa free access to countries!
Haha exactly. Right now, there are just too many unknowns and everything is a speculation. I do wonder though if the EU eventually falls apart if some of those countries will eventually go back to visas though? Doubtful but who knows! Only time will tell….
I am a U.S. citizen and thus did not have a say in the Brexit matter, but I hoped they would vote to remain. Looking forward, travelers (and Europeans) should hope that this does not cause a chain reaction – I feel strongly that continental Europe must remain united.
Outside of the deflated currencies, though, there will be no change in our ability to travel freely for the next 2-3 years, at least. I definitely have my eye on Holland and Italy, though.
Exactly, first we have no idea what (if any) impact this will actually have. If things do start happening, like you said, it could still be years before anything actually changes…after all, it is government so nothing will ever happen quickly!
I live in London, and I can tell you first hand that Londoners are NOT happy about this situation. They voted almost 70/30 to remain and are very, very angry about the situation. I think it has the potential to be a total mess. Who knows, it may level out and stabilize, but with the process expected to take 2 years, the UK is facing 2 years of instability. It certainly will be cheaper for tourists coming to the UK though!
Do you think it will ACTUALLY go through? Like you said, so many people (I’ve already read an overwhelming majority of Scotland isn’t happy about this either) want to stay.
Certainly some saving to be had. Hope it remains that way until summer next year so I can benefit and visit the rest of the European countries I did not get to see on my last trip.
It will be very interesting to follow the next period and what the effects the Brexit will cause. But I do have to agree that traveling to UK should be done now and take advantage of the low currency rates
We will see if it actually come to be. Right now nothing changes except the lower British pound. The PM deliberately made the referendum non binding, and he stepped down as PM before enacting article 50 which is the formal notice to leave the EU. Over 2 million people have sign a petition to have a 2nd referendum so this is far from over.
As travelers that are in the UK right now the day to day life has not changed. And really unless your are a UK citizen even if it does go through not much will change for visitors and travelers.
Exactly. And I honestly don’t know if there will be much of a change (if any) even within the next few years. I also wonder if they’ll actually follow through. However, what HAS changed (for right now) is that the pound is extremely low, which means it’s great for us on the dollar to travel!
As far as I’m concerned, this will be all OK in a few months when governments manage to organize themselves. Europe has more than 50 countries, which half do not belong to EU. Just another one on the list of non-EU country… not a big deal… I can’t wait to have a new nation in Europe after this: Scotland will go for it! I proudly welcome Scots to the EU! Great article to motivate people in profiting for the right moment to travel.
I agree that I really don’t think it is going to have a HUGE impact on Europe as a whole. But, financially speaking with the Pound being at the lowest it’s been in 30 years, might as well travel now! 🙂
I have big concerns about what will happen to both airfare and mobile fees once we’re actually out of the EU 🙁
I honestly don’t know if they will change much for the airfare, but I guess we’ll just have to find out!