The Spanish authorities have sent back dozens of British people who had flown by plane to the coastal town of Alicante. Because of Brexit, British citizens living in Spain need a special residence document, the Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero (TIE). According to expat newspaper Olive Press, there was a sign at the airport with the inscription “No TIE. No access.”
Some forty British did not have the proper papers on Monday and would have been sent back to Manchester on the same plane. A 47-year-old man complained about that.
He told the newspaper that some travellers showed in vain a letter asking them to pick up their TIE card in Spain. “What more proof do you need that people live here?”
According to the British There is a Catch-22: they have to go into the country to catch a TIE, but in order to get into the country they need a TIE first.
The delay in the return flight to England made the British even angrier. Travellers were also told that their luggage would not be returned until days later. The British Embassy in Spain said they were aware of the problems.
Spain has restricted international travel due to the coronavirus crisis. Therefore, the British had to prove that they live in the southern European country.
The Spaniards are causing a lot of turmoil in the British media. The Daily Mail newspaper headline that the authorities in the coastal town “refuse to let dozens of British into Spain because of Brexit.”
The travel problems faced by British people since Brexit have been widely reported in British media. For example, it was rather grumpy that the Dutch customs confiscated sandwiches with meat from a motorist because because of the British departure from the European Union stricter rules apply.