As soon as the news of Brexit broke people quickly realised how important the freedom of movement was. Many took for granted how easy it was for citizens in the UK to travel freely around the EU, now that is all set to change.
Having to apply for a visa just to go on seven day holiday with the family from Yorkshire to Costa Del Sol? Seems excessive but it’s what looks set to come. Not to mention the added queues when they land in countries still part of the EU. It’s clear now many didn’t realise the massive impact Brexit would have on the little things people take for granted.
Today it has been reported that the Irish passport office has had to hire extra staff just to handle the extra UK applications coming in since the Brexit vote. There are millions of people in the UK entitled to Irish passports due to either a parent or grandparent born in Ireland.
The latest figures from the Department of Foreign Affairs show that applications from the UK were up 74% in January compared to the same time last year. In January this year, over 7,000 people from the North of Ireland applied for an Irish passport, up from 3,973 in the same month last year. In Britain there was a jump of 71%, with 6,000 applying this January. Last year passport applications from the North of Ireland saw an increase of 26.5% over 2015 to 67,972, while application levels from Britain increased by 40.6% to 64,996.
Opportunities as an EU citizen include living and working anywhere within the union, a student exchange programme, and having access to healthcare when travelling. With the EU looking set to come down hard on the UK after their exit vote it obvious those perks will disappear for British citizens following Brexit.