Travel Guidance for EU, EEA or Swiss Business Travellers to the UK

Following Brexit, free movement with the European Union (EU) ended on 31 December 2020 and the UK introduced a new points-based immigration system

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss Citizen travelling to the UK after 1 January 2021 for short or long business trips then you will need to check if you or your colleagues will require a visa for the stay. This will depend on the length of your stay and the activities you do. 

Here is some guidance on the types of business trips that do and do not require visas to visit the UK and some other important travel information and links that you may find useful. 

EU, EEA or Swiss Citizens can continue to visit the UK without a visa to:

  • attend meetings, conferences, seminars, interviews; and
  • give a one-off or short series of talks and speeches provided these are not organised as commercial events and will not make a profit for the organiser; and
  • negotiate and sign deals and contracts; and
  • attend trade fairs, for promotional work only, provided the visitor is not directly selling; and
  • carry out site visits and inspections; and
  • gather information for their employment overseas; and
  • be briefed on the requirements of a UK based customer, provided any work for the customer is done outside of the UK.
              In most cases you can stay for upto 6 months.

              More about Business travel to the UK here.

              EU, EEA or Swiss Citizens cannot visit the UK without a visa to:
              • do paid or unpaid work for a UK company or as a self-employed person
              • do a work placement or internship
              • sell directly to the public or provide goods and services
              • to work in the UK for longer than 6 months

              Read more about visiting the UK on a business trip and check whether you need to apply for a visa to carry out your intended activities.

              Find out more about working in the UK.


              • EU, EEA or Swiss Citizens will need a valid passport to travel
              • Your passport has to be valid for the whole time you are in the UK
              • You will not be able to use an EU, EEA or Swiss national ID card to enter the UK from 1 October 2021 unless you have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. In these cases, you can continue to use your national ID card to enter the UK until at least 31 December 2025.
              • EU, EEA and Swiss citizens can continue to use the automatic ePassport gates to pass through the border on arrival.

              EHIC cards

              If you’re visiting the UK from an EU country you can use a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) issued in that country. Your EHIC will cover the costs of treatment if you get ill on the visit.

              If you're from the EU, EEA or Switzerland and were living in the UK before 31 December 2020, you can apply for a new EHIC from the UK. 

              After Brexit, the U.K. introduced its own version of the EHIC card, the Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). This card functions similarly to its predecessor, allowing Brits access to state healthcare during visits to the EU.

              Neither the EHIC nor the GHIC are a substitute for travel insurance and cannot be used for planned medical treatment in the EU.

              Having both an EHIC card certificate and a private travel insurance policy has always been recommended, as it isn’t intended to cover “health tourism” if people are going abroad specifically for medical treatment, including giving birth.

              The government always advises visitors to the UK to take out travel or health insurance. This means that you can reclaim any healthcare costs you are required to pay from your insurer. 

              The EHIC is not an alternative to travel insurance. It will not cover any private medical healthcare, being flown back home, or lost or stolen property. Therefore, it is important to have both an EHIC and a valid private travel insurance policy.

              Read more about NHS charges for people from abroad


              Visitors with a non-UK driving licence can drive in the UK. You do not need an international driving permit (IDP).

              If you have vehicle insurance issued in the EU, Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Serbia or Switzerland, you should carry an insurance green card or other valid proof of insurance.

              To be valid, other proof of insurance must be a document issued by the vehicle insurance provider which includes the:
              • name of the insurance provider
              • number plate or other identifying particulars of the vehicle
              • period of insurance cover

              Contact your vehicle insurance provider before you travel.

              If your vehicle is insured in a country outside the EU, Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Serbia or Switzerland, what you’ll need to do will depend on if your country is a member of the green card system.

              If your country is a member, you will need to carry a green card.

              If your country is not a member, your vehicle will need UK vehicle insurance.

              Useful links

              Brexit: Guidance for businesses

              We have made every effort to provide accurate information to help you with your trip however this may change at any time so please do take a look at the UK government website for Visiting the UK as an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen  for the latest information.

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