How will Brexit affect my golf holiday?

With Brexit, the United Kingdom and the European Union have a new political relationship, which establishes new agreements and arrangements. These new policies change the way we’ve been travelling and visiting European golf courses and might make you wonder how Brexit will affect your next golf holiday.

Even if since the 31st of January the UK is no longer part of the EU, British golf players travelling abroad haven’t experienced any critical changes in their holiday arrangements yet. You won’t have needed a visa to enter an EU country or had to pay extra charges, and it’s because travelling conditions will stay the same until the end of the current transition period. 

 

What is the transition period and how long it will take?

The transition period goes from the 31st of January 2020 until the end of December 2020, meaning that the UK is considered an independent country from the European Union. However, many agreements decided before this stage will still be active, especially the ones related to travellers. After the transition period, the United Kingdom and the EU will have new rules and agreements that haven’t yet been defined.

 

Do British citizens need a visa to travel to the EU?

The first question that comes to the mind of many British golfers planning their golf break in a European country is: will I need a visa to travel to Europe? The answer is no. Well, not for now. During the transition period, British citizens won’t need to get a visa if they’re going to stay as a tourist for up to 90 days in the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Therefore, if you’re planning to travel after the 1st of January 2021, it’s likely that you need more requirements that the ones you have required for now and British citizens might have to pay for ‘visa-exempt travel’. Also, the European Union will implement the European Travel Information and Authorization System (Etias) by 2022, a specific programme for non-EU citizens that would like to travel in Europe, including British citizens. The application for Etias will cost 7 Euros.

 

Do I need a new passport?

After the transition period, if the expiration date is shorter than 6 months or if it’s more than 10 years old, you’ll need to renew your British passport. Keep in mind that replacing your passport usually takes 3 weeks. 

 

What will I need to travel after Brexit?

Currently, many non-EU citizens need to show their return ticket and prove that they have enough money for their stay and it’s possible that Britons will have to fulfil the same requirement after the transition period. Once at border control, British citizens will have to queue in different lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens. Besides, when travelling between the UK and the EU, you’ll need to declare cash of £10,000 or more (or the equivalent in another currency).

 

How long can I stay in the EU?

If you are planning to live in an eternal golf break, you might keep in mind that British citizens will be able to stay as a tourist for up to 90 days in any 180 days in an EU country, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. 

 

How will Brexit affect travel insurance?

Until the end of 2020, citizens with the European Health Insurance Card (Ehic) are entitled to have healthcare in any EEA member state as well as Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland. 

Therefore, it’s always recommended to have travel insurance that covers your healthcare and pre-existing medical condition.

 

What will happen to roaming charges after Brexit?

After the transition period, the guarantee of free-roaming for British mobiles in EU countries will stop. We recommend you check the new terms with your phone operator to avoid any weird bills from getting that perfect photo for the ‘Gram. However, a new law protects you from getting phone charges over £45 without you knowing.

 

Brexit brings new policies when it comes to crossing borders, but once you arrive at the golf course, the enjoyable golf rounds with your friends will be the same. 

We hope we’ve covered your questions about travelling or planning a golf break after Brexit. In case you need more details, you can find more advice here: https://www.gov.uk/visit-europe-1-january-2021

If you are going on a golf holiday after the 1st of January 2021, we recommend visiting gov.uk to check the latest news about Brexit. 

Aphrodite Hills Golf Club, Cyprus

5 great links: Golf courses near the beach

When you’re going on golf holidays with your friends or golf club, you want to make the most of your break: test yourself on the greens, enjoy a stunning view and get some vitamin D at the beach maybe. With spring and summer in your mind, you might want your next location to be close to the sea, so you can dive into the water and relax on the sand after improving your swing the golf course. For this blog post, we’ve selected some amazing and sunny courses near the coast that you should visit on your next golf break.

 

Vale do Lobo (Royal), Portugal

At Vale do Lobo, approximately 30 minutes away from Faro Airport

The Vale do Lobo is the most photographed golf course in Portugal and it’s one of the most beautiful courses in the Algarve. Right next to the Atlantic, the 18-hole link is the closest course to the sea in the south of Portugal, you can even see the golden sand of the beach right at the end of the green. Although the views are mesmerizing, being so close to the beach might add an extra difficulty: the wind. Sometimes you can have a nice and refreshing breeze from the Atlantic or the strong wind can give you a hard time and change the trajectory of the ball.

Established in 1997, Vale do Lobo (Royal) was designed by the American architect Rocky Roquemore, based on the original layout of Sir Henry Cotton. The link was built at the edge of a cliff on top of the Vale do Lobo beach and it extends further inland. The most remarkable hole in the course, and probably in the Algarve, is the par-three 16th, located on the top of the cliff.

 

Aphrodite Hills Golf Club, Cyprus

At Aphrodite Hills, approximately 15 minutes away from Paphos Airport

Named after the Greek goddess of love that emerged from the sea, Aphrodite Hills Golf Club is located near the Mediterranean shore, at the sunny island of Cyprus. A little bit further from the coast than Vale do Lobo, the view of the sea from this course is still stunning, being only 5 minutes away from the Ranti Forest Beach. 

The golf course was designed by the American architect Cabell B. Robinson and he considered Aphrodite Hills the culmination of his work. The golf course was built on two-level landforms separated by a canyon, two difficulties that the architect took advantage of to create memorable holes such as the 3rd and the 7th. In Aphrodite Hills Golf Club, Robinson integrates hazards and ponds on the greens with the local Mediterranean nature of the landscape. 

 

Finca Cortesin Golf Resort, Spain

At Finca Cortesin, approximately 1 hour away from Málaga Airport

The Finca Cortesin is situated between the Estepona Mountains and just a few metres away from the Mediterranean shore: an 18-hole link surrounded by an outstanding landscape. Located in the south of Spain and with an average temperature of 20C in spring, it’s a great destination to enjoy a sangria at La Galera beach (just 10 minutes away) after an enjoyable golf game with your friends. 

Therefore, not only do the views make Finca Cortesin a magnificent course, the abundance of details in the greens round off an elegant and challenging course. The link keeps the balance between the natural characteristics of the Mediterranean forest and high-quality Bermuda grass. The course is designed with white marble sand bunkers and water hazards placed strategically to make every hole a different and exciting challenge for the golfers.

 

Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort, Bulgaria

At Thracian Cliffs, approximately 1 hour away from Varna Airport

Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort is the most photographed golf course in Europe. Built on the top of a cliff and with a stunning view, the Thracian Cliffs is a unique golf experience: Golfers can see the sea from every hole of the course. Sitting on the top of the cliff and with the Black Sea behind, the 6th hole will be the most memorable hole for any player, not only because of its difficulty but for the impressive views of the waves.

Gary Player designed a course suitable for all levels, but still challenging enough for the expert golfers, it requires analysis of the green and careful planning of each stroke. Hazards of sand, narrow fairways and even the edge of the cliff are some difficulties that will make players prove themselves.

 

Kiawah Island Golf Resort (Ocean), USA

At Kiawah Island Golf Resort, approximately 50 minutes away from Charleston Airport

On the coast of South Carolina, the ground slinks into the Ocean making parcels of land almost independent islands that disappear in the water. Between these parcels of land, the architects Pete and Alice Dye designed the Kiawah Island Golf Resort (Ocean), a delightful link where the green blends into the sand of the beach. 

At this majestic spot, Alice Dye wanted the players to enjoy the Ocean view while they were playing in the 23,028 feet golf course. Narrow greens, hazards and oaks are strategically placed to keep the game exciting, but once again, the wind is the biggest challenge the golfer will have to overcome. It has a key role when it comes to making a successful stroke and makes each round different and stimulating.