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Ministry answers queries on under-18s and travel to and from France

We spoke to the French Interior Ministry to clear up the confusion over non-EU under-18s’ travel

Ministry confirmed passports of under-18s benefiting from the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement should not be stamped Pic: Frau aus UA / Shutterstock

The Interior Ministry has provided some clarifications after we recently flagged up confusion among British families about rules for under-18s when travelling.

Read more: Residency and travel: Confusion over French rules for non-EU under-18s

A spokesman said the Douanes (customs) service will also issue a reminder of the rules to border control officers at Limoges, where several British families had reported issues.

He said that applications for DCEM travel documents for non-EU under-18s are now made online

The information from online applications is presented in a paper format featuring a security barcode, rather than on a laminated card. 

The new system is recognised across the Schengen area.

DCEM to avoid passport stamping

Passports of under-18s benefiting from the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement should not be stamped. 

They are not obliged to have a DCEM, similarly to other children of nationalities that do not need visas for short-term visits to France. 

However, as this can be complicated to prove if they are not with their parents, a DCEM can be useful to avoid passport stamping. 

In any case, the stamping of passports of people with a continuing right to live in France has no legal effect. 

The spokesman stressed that all unaccompanied children travelling abroad need a free autorisation de sortie du territoire form.

Related articles

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How does EU's 90/180-day rule work when visiting France?

Does a French residency card allow you free movement in the EU?

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