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Are UK lorry drivers exempt from the EU’s 90/180-days rule?

The rules state that a non-EU citizen (including Britons)  should not spend more than 90 days out of any rolling 180-day period in the Schengen area, including France

Reader question: With regards to Covid rules, British lorry drivers have been exempt from many rules and restrictions, but what about the Schengen area’s 90/180-days rule? Are they exempt from this if they regularly travel between the UK and EU?  C.W.

We checked with sources at the European Commission about the 90/180-day rule and its applicability to lorry drivers involved in commercial transport between the UK and the Schengen area.

As you know, normally this rule is applied to all non-EU/EEA/Swiss ‘visitors’ to the Schengen area, if they are of nationalities that are exempt from the need for a short-term visitor visa, even for brief trips.

The rules state that a person should not spend more than 90 days out of any rolling 180-day period in the Schengen area as a whole, and this is checked by the stamping of passports into and out of the area.

A European Commission source said that there are no special exemptions on this issue, so the 90/180-day rule and passport stamping also apply to lorry drivers crossing in and out of the Schengen area.

Related stories: 

Covid-19: Rules for travel to and from France

France travel: Can spouses of EU citizens stay beyond 90 days?

Traffic jams, new UK air route, strikes: Eight France travel updates

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