From the Musicians Union
Deal or no deal, gigging in Europe will see the need for an increasing portfolio of documents to ensure trouble-free passage, to, from and through the 27 member states of the EU.
To help MU members with the increased administration, we have compiled a flowchart for musicians travelling to the EU post 1 January 2021, either solo or in groups, to assist in making sure you have the correct documentation prior to setting off. It also contains links to useful online resources.
Preparation is absolutely vital
It is absolutely vital to be as well prepared as possible. Some of the administration can be completed in advance of work being offered, such as a valid passport and a range of insurances, including instrument and equipment cover, PLI, and business travel insurance.
Be aware, you will need to check the requirements for each of the member states you will be visiting as they often differ from each other. Follow the link in the flowchart under ‘Work Permits.’
If you require a CITES Musical Instrument Certificate, we recommend obtaining one immediately. The Certificate lasts for three years and currently there is no charge.
Liaise in advance with your tour management
Where individual musicians are travelling alone to/from a gig, or between tours/different gigs, part of their travel may have been organised by a tour manager. It is key to establish who is responsible for acquiring and paying for the relevant documentation, insurance, carnets, visas etc.
If you are flying out to join a tour, you may not have proof of a ‘return journey’ because you intend coming back with the group. We recommend liaising in advance with the tour management to avoid any oversights.
Remember that securing the correct ‘paperwork’ once you have left the UK can be extremely difficult.
Musicians are encouraged to seek further advice from the appropriate authorities to ensure the relevant documentation is obtained. For example:
- The UK Government’s page on extra business travel requirements when visiting Europe after 1 January.
- By emailing the Government about CITES permits email@example.com
- The Species+ page
- Our own page on musical instruments made out of rare materials
Please visit the MU website regularly for the latest information, as travel requirements are subject to change. You may also find our latest lobbying update on Brexit, our Brexit FAQs and our campaign to support musicians working in the EU useful.