In a rare act of common sense from Her Majesties Loyal Government, the common travel area between Ireland and the United Kingdom will remain intact with NO PASSPORTS needed between the two countries.
The Common Travel Arera (CTA) between Ireland, United Kingdom, the Isle of Man and the Channel Island allows citizens to cross between these territories with only the absolute minimum of identity information (ie A driving licence is good enough to board a flight or cross a border for citizens of each country or zone within the area).
However, Immigration Minister Phil Woolas (MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth) had said …
“The Common Travel Area that defines the border controls or lack thereof is by its nature presenting a risk, It is being exploited by illegal immigrants and serious organized crime.”
Sigh. Are we sure this parliament aren’t practising for parts in the re-enactment of “1984”?
However the upper house of the Houses of Parliament has decreed this idea is full of bolderdash and piffle, and thus the although e-borders and APIS will be needed from a time from 2014 onwards (to prevent us from evils, abuses etc – or whatever piffle the government wants to make up), the use of passports between these zones will NOT be required.
Logic at last.
Of course, there is mixed reaction from the travel industries. Sea operators are very happy with this, where O’Liar Airlines moan that “everyone should have passport anyway so we don’t care.”, whilst ABTA has called for clarification at airports.
My comment? I may travel everywhere with my passport (and that’s out of nature), but to know this one method of travel is still passport free if I’ve only got my drivers licence on me – I can handle this.