UK airlines may be given extra time if there is no-deal Brexit

One of the biggest concerns raised by MP’s over Brexit is the effect it will have on travel. With chaos predicted in a no-deal scenario, both the UK and other EU member states have warned that an agreement needs to be reached to ensure a smooth transition. Some of the airlines that would be affected if the deal is rejected by MP’s in the UK next week include:

  • British Airways
  • Aer Lingus
  • Vueling
  • Ryanair
  • Easyjet
  • Iberia

If no deal is reached, these companies would need to change their ownership structure, which would mean a 51% EU ownership requirement. Or, come to other arrangements with the EU in order to continue operating. Under the withdrawal agreement, these companies would be able to keep their licenses during the transition period that’s been set out.

This has been an issue for the UK government, who wish to avoid travel disruption. However, in a recent interview, officials from the Commission have now said that, if the UK does leave without a deal, flights would not be immediately grounded as previously suggested. EU officials have confirmed that the UK could be given more time.

This would allow airline operators to reach a deal that would allow them to continue operating; for instance, by trying to achieve majority EU ownership. They would also be able to try and put “corrective measures” in place, so that they would be able to meet EU rules and regulations, which would help to minimise disruption.

This would be put in place as a contingency plan. To avoid disruption, airlines would be given an extra year and would be allowed to run direct flights between the UK and EU cities. It would not, however, allow them to fly between European cities. The commission says that it is “entitled to act in case it finds that an operating licence does not comply with the applicable requirements”.

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