If you’re on licence you will normally need to get permission to travel outside the UK, but this is often given. Otherwise, there’s rarely anything stopping you from travelling abroad and you should be able to travel freely within the EU. Travelling to specific countries like America and Australia will usually require you to apply for a visa due to their specific process.
Taken from our top 10 things to know
Read our latest news posts about travelling abroad
Here you’ll find links to various parts of this site where we have information and useful resources relating to travelling abroad.
A lot will depend on the country you wish to travel to, the nature of your offence and the sentence/disposal you received.
If you’re on the SOR you will need to notify the police of your intention to leave the UK for any foreign travel. Once you’ve notified the police a ‘Green Notice’ may be issued and ‘flagged’ via your passport. This will alert overseas immigration that you are on the SOR.
No. Biometric passports include a microchip which stores a digitised image of your photograph as well as your biographical details which are printed in the passport.
Standard licence conditions usually state that you must not travel outside the UK without the permission of your supervising officer. There are no general exclusions from travelling abroad while serving a community order.
For people that wish to emigrate to certain countries, you can apply for a police certificate which will give a formal record of your convictions.
As a result of Brexit, UK citizens will need approval to travel to the EU via the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS).
Frequently asked questions
Here you’ll find some specific questions that we regularly get about travelling abroad and the answers we generally provide. More detailed FAQ’s may be included in the information pages above.
‘No Live Trace’ means that there is criminal record information held on the Police National Computer but it has been ‘stepped down’. Anyone who sees this, can see that you have a criminal record from your past, even if they can’t see details.
See more about how ‘No Live Trace’ might be used by agencies such as the US Embassy on our information on police certificates.
If your information is held in the UK, you are covered by the Data Protection Act, so you can apply for the information they hold on you from that country’s embassy.
If you returned to the UK, your licence would start again and you would be liable for recall to prison for the length of time you have left on licence. See our section travelling abroad whilst on licence.
Here you’ll find links to useful organisations and websites related to travelling abroad that we refer to in our information and advice. Contact details for the organisations listed below can be found here.
- ACRO Criminal Records Office
- GOV.UK – The GOV.UK site has a comprehensive section on living/travelling abroad. You can check the entry requirements of a particular country to establish whether you’ll need to apply for a visa to travel.
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