A Handy Guide to Moving to Europe from the UK
Is it still possible to move to Europe after Brexit but you may need to work a little harder to get there. We explore your options.
Whether you like it or not, in 2021 the UK stopped being part of the EU. Yes Brexit actually happened, and with that brings many changes for any British National looking to relocate to Europe from the UK. By leaving the EU, the UK has lost its status within other European countries which perviously allowed British nationals the right to travel freely within Europe and automatically gave them access to live or work anywhere in the EU.
So now we have lost these rights and the UK has officially become a separate nation outside of the EU, what does that mean for you if you live in the UK, hold a British passport and want to move abroad?
How long can I stay in Europe after Brexit?
Without a Visa, it is still possible for a British passport holder to stay in any (or multiple) EU countries for up to 90 days out of any 180-day period without without obtaining a Visa. If you are planning to move to Europe however you will want to stay for longer than 90 days at a time (and be able to return without a 180 day time frame.) Therefore it will be necessary to obtain a Visa for your chosen country.
Can I still Move to Europe after Brexit?
The short answer is yes. If you have been dreaming of selling your UK home and relocating to Europe, then it is still very much a possibility. It may be a slightly more complex process than it was pre-Brexit, and comes with a certain amount of uncertainty. But it is still possible to gain permanent residency for most EU countries. Firstly you'll need to obtain a visa to stay longer than the 90 days and will mean following and meeting the specific requirements of your chosen country and each country.
For example if you are looking to relocate to France you need to apply for a long-stay visa. This allows you to stay for up to one year, if you want to stay longer than a year, you must then apply, you must apply for a residence permit. You can find out more information about the French long stay visa here.
If you are looking to move to Spain you’ll firstly have to gain a temporary residence visa. This allows you to stay in Spain for three months up to five years. After 5 years, if you are still living in Spain, you can apply for a Spanish permanent residence visa, which provides you with the same rights of a Spanish citizen. You can find out more information about Spanish residence visas here.
Again, if you are looking to relocate to Portugal from the UK you will need to follow the procedure to extend your stay in Portugal by obtaining the correct Visa, then to make the move permanent you will need to apply for residence in Portugal. You can find more information about residence visas for Portugal here.
Please make sure you do your research into your chosen destination before you make any big decisions. You may have to take a leap of faith that you'll be aloud to stay as things can change all the time, but you should certainly not give up on your dream of relocating to Europe. The UK government has provided this guide to moving to Europe, which also contains information for British nationals who already live in an EU country.
Other useful resources will be social media accounts for the British Embassy in the country you are hoping to move to.
Always ensure you have at leat 6 months on your passport before you travel or relocate to Europe. This is now a requirement for some EU countries.
Can UK Citizens work in Europe after Brexit?
As a UK citizen, post Brexit you no longer have the automatic right work in the EU. But it may well still be possible to obtain the correct visa, even if you have to do a bit of extra paperwork. Most countries will expect you to have a valid job offer before they will issue you with a working permit, but this may not always be the case. As with moving abroad each separate country within the EU will have their own rules and don't assume a work visa will automatically allow you to live in the country. You may also find that your professional qualifications may not be recognised in the EU country you are hoping to work in post Brexit.
Again, try following the British Embassy for the country you wish to work in on Facebook or Twitter to obtain the most up to date information on obtaining working visas or immigration rules.
Moving your Home to Europe After Brexit
If you have your Visa sorted and your new home in Europe is in the horizon, then you'll be looking for a trusted European removals firm to help move your possessions aboard.
Dennis Removals have been helping customers relocate to Europe before and now after Brexit and are committed to helping make moving your home abroad as smooth and stress-free as it can be. Please get in touch to speak to us about the requirements for your move, one of our skilled move coordinators will visit you home to talk you through the process. Our team will be with you from start to finish and ensure you and your possessions are well taken care of.