Britain Has Begun Issuing Non-European Union Passports to Some Citizens

Apr 7, 2019

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Despite the fact that the Brexit departure yet to take place, select British citizens who recently renewed their passport are getting a surprise in the mail: a non-European Union passport. Though the UK is still a part of the EU — for now anyway — the words ‘European Union’ have been removed from some covers of the burgundy booklet.

One Twitter user posted a picture of her new passport along with her old one to show off the change, along with her feeling on the matter.

The tweet has garnered more than 4,000 comments with people on both sides of the Brexit debate weighing in about the new passport design.

In a statement issued by Sajid Javid, the Home Secretary said that the new design was set to be introduced on March 30, the day after the scheduled exit from the EU. However, some passport offices still have the old passports in stock and will be using those until they run out. Javid said the move was “sensible and efficient” and the best use of tax payer money. For now, citizens could be issued either one of the two passports, but can’t choose which one they are issued. Both are valid for travel.

This is just the first step in a two-part redesign of the UK passport. At the end of the year, Britain is set to return to its old blue passport, a design that dates back to 1921.

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