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

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.

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