Drivers treated as ‘cash cows’ when travelling with pets due to new post-Brexit rule05/21/2021
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From 1 January, current pet passports are no longer valid for travel into the EU with drivers instead required to get an Animal Health Certificate (AHC). However, the new AHC is only valid for a single trip compared to traditional pet passports, which could be used for several journeys over a period of months.
The passes cost £110 which includes a consultation and the finalising of the legal documents.
An AHC will also be required for travel between the UK and Northern Ireland forcing drivers to splash out on regular passes for trips to see friends and family across the border.
But Mr Freeman has attacked the proposals as “needless cost and bureaucracy” which could cause a headache for British motorists.
He said drivers in the UK were already treated as “cash cows” on UK roads, which would now be “extended on travels abroad”.
He said: “At a time of such uncertainty, needless cost and bureaucracy is something the British public could well do without.
“More and more people will be travelling with their dogs after restrictions are lifted since many kennels went out of business during lockdown so they have nowhere to leave them.
“Or perhaps people won`t fancy going by plane because of having to wear a mask.
“So if they are already driving will see no reason not to take their dog.
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“The Government already treats the British motorist as a cash cow on UK roads.
“Now, thanks to the AHC it seems this is being extended on travels abroad too.”
An Animal Health Certificate has to be issued by an official veterinarian who has been authored by the Government.
The certificate can only be issued 10 days prior to travel. Drivers must also leave the country within 10 days of receiving the pass.
However, the Royal Veterinary College has warned some countries may require blood tests and additional treatments to allow pets.
Nick Freeman said the new changes were an “unnecessary expense” to foreign travel.
He said: “The existing system was perfectly reasonable.
“The new AHC is an unnecessary expense for travellers when they are already likely to be battered by extra costs such as PCR tests.
“As a sufferer of chronic air sickness, I only ever holiday abroad by car. As a result, I have been driving to the South of France, several times a year, with various family pets, for the best part of 30 years.
“Consequently, I am very familiar with the pre-Brexit system of pet passports.
“It is a system which has always worked seamlessly and clearly requires no alteration and amendment.
“All the information needed as a condition of entry is contained in the pet passport including the date of the last rabies vaccination.
“I therefore cannot understand the purpose of the new scheme.
“As well as the cost, they could also increase demand for vet appointments since vets will be absorbed by this new paperwork – very distressing if you have a sick animal in need of medical care.”
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