The UK and EU have unilaterally decided not to impose visas on short-stay visitors. For short stays of up to 90 days in any 180-day period, UK nationals will not need a visa when travelling to and within the Schengen Area to undertake a limited range of activities, such as tourism, or attending business meetings, or cultural and sports events. However, Member States can require a visa for what they regard as “paid activity”.
Therefore, UK cultural professionals, including musicians, seeking to tour within the EU will be required to check domestic immigration and visitor rules for each Member State in which they intend to tour. Although some Member States may allow touring without a visa or work permit, others will require musicians and other creative professionals to obtain a visa or work permit, in the same way that they are required for other international artists.
We recognise that this means there will be some additional processes for those in cultural and creative industries working across the EU. However this does not mean our sectors will not be able to work in the EU nor that our position has changed on being as welcoming as ever to talented EU artists and musicians wishing to perform in the UK.
We are delivering an extensive programme of engagement with the industry to assess impacts and support these sectors in understanding new requirements. The Secretary of State had a very productive discussion with representatives from across the creative and cultural sectors on the issue on Wednesday 20th January. We have also published guidance online, signposting to official information provided by EU countries about their business travel routes, which is regularly updated.
We will also look at whether we can work with our partners in EU Member States to find ways to make life easier for those working in the creative industries in our respective countries.