Second homeowners in Spain will be limited to 90 days!
If you are British and follow comments made in the UK press, you are probably not happy about the “EU’s new post-Brexit travel rules”, which ban you from spending more than three months in your holiday home in Spain from January 2021.
Many second-home owners are worried, confused and saddened by the news regarding the 90-day rule giving them cause for concern. If you are not aware of this, then the following information will be of interest and useful for you to know.
The changes to your rights are not down to “new post-Brexit travel rules” as although this is a result of Brexit it is not new. The same rules have always applied to non-EU citizens, moving around as third country nationals.
You were fortunate to enjoy special rights that waived this rule because the UK was a member of the EU. Brexit has taken those benefits away from British people because the UK is no longer a member of the EU club, so therefore cannot expect exclusive membership rewards. Britain chose to put itself in that different category.
The 90-day stay rule means anyone visiting any EU country cannot return for a further three months. It is actually worse than that, as the rule doesn’t apply to just Spain, but the entire EU bloc.
So, once a 90-day allowance in a 180-day period has been spent, you cannot return to your holiday home in Spain, or travel anywhere else in the EU.
When you enter the Schengen area more than once in the 90 days, official guidance from the EU says, “you must carefully calculate your days of stay, as the overall period of stay must not exceed the overall total of 90 days within any 180-days period”.
For those of you who like to spend all winter in the Tenerife sun, you will find yourselves having to return to cold Britain sooner than you would wish.
The ramifications of overstaying in Europe could be serious. Post-Brexit, British passports will be scanned on arrival and departure. Anyone caught “illegally present”, staying longer than permitted, risks an “over-stay flag” on their passport. This could lead to a fine, difficulties applying for any future visa, or even a re-entry ban.
As more details emerge regarding your lost rights, blame has frequently been levelled at the “vindictive” EU, but really, it is standard third country national rules being applied. Anger exists at the dawning realisation of what benefits are being lost to British owners of a second home in Spain. For some people, perhaps including some reading this article now, late awareness of the 90-day rule is a real shock.
Note. The 26 Schengen countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
We will attempt to cover questions that may be asked by British people who have previously enjoyed longer term stays in their Tenerife property and the following Q & A’s will clarify some of the things you need to know.
Frequently asked questions The Post-Brexit 90-day Rule.
Click the question to view the relevant answer.