British tourists travelling to France from the UK are expected to face queues that are twice as long thanks to new digital checks post Brexit.
According to a new report from Cour de Comptes, France’s public finance watchdog, British tourists could face far lengthier queues when the EU’s entry/exit scheme is introduced.
New checks for non-EU citizens, including Britons, will see travellers need all their data and documents processed before entering the EU.
More than 500 “data kiosks” and 250 tablets have been ordered by France to process passengers crossing the border via ferry, train and plane.
As travellers will need to have their photo and fingerprints taken when the system is launched it is expected to take double the time of stamping a passport.
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After passing through the kiosk system, tourists will need to show their passport to border officials.
Paul Charles, chief executive of travel consultancy the PC agency, told The Telegraph: “Getting into Europe needs to be more seamless, not more cumbersome.
“The processing of passengers, whether at our ferry ports, at St Pancras or on arrival at a European airport, will have to be so much faster otherwise peak periods will become unbearable for those stuck in ever-longer queues.”
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Simon Calder, travel expert, said that the queues “should not be a surprise for anyone” after the UK Government “negotiated for British passport holders to become third-country citizens”.
British travellers will soon need to register for the ETIAS scheme if they want to holiday in the EU.
The scheme will cost seven euros (£5.98) every three years and is part of new EU border security plans.
The majority of applications are expected to be processed within minutes but in rare cases Britons may need to attend an interview in person.
The ETIAS is due to be introduced next year and will apply to all non-EU citizens including Britons.
Under post-Brexit rules, British citizens can currently travel to the EU for 90 out of every 180 days without needing a visa.
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