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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
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Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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Regarding EU directive 2004/38/EC, Real Decreto 240/2007. Stating

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Regarding EU directive 2004/38/EC, Real Decreto 240/2007. Stating family members of a EU national, in possession of a valid U.K. residence card do NOT require a visa to visit Spain.
My wfe is a Thai citizen with a permanent British residence card, last week we were refused bording on a flight to Spain because we did not have a Schengen visa.
We lost over £600 on the flights, hotel etc.
At the airport we were told, without the visa we needed a EEA family member stamp in her passport, but after checking the U.K. border agency, they no longer provide such a stamp. All info is carried within her residence card, which we had at the airport.
Were they correct to refuse us boarding ?
mail [email protected];

What exactly does her residence card state? Please include everything
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I do not have it to hand, but from memory, It carries her photo, and states she is a British resident over a period of 10 years
It does not state she is married to a EU (British) citizen.

I did check out with the U.K. border agency, the cost of changing out her residance card to reflect that she is also a EU family member, and fees were astronomical (would cost more than a holiday).


Dave Horrocks

Thank you,

Unfortunately although she is allowed under EEA regulations to enter Spain as your poise, the fact that her residence card does not state that she is a family member of an EEA national is the problem and the airline was acting reasonably to deny her boarding.

I would suggest that she applies for British Citizenship straight away as she is eligible based on her marriage to you and the fact that she has lived in the UK for more than 3 years and has no restrictions on how long she can live in the UK.

See here

Once she gets a British passport, she will be free to travel to Spain and any other EEA country.

Hope this helps
Sorry, it should have read spouse, not poise.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Not a problem, I read it as spouse.

Did you get my second reply ?

No reply from you received.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

British citizenship is no longer an easy or inexpensive thing to achieve, maybe it was years ago, but not now.

The issue is, The Spanish visa agency is misbehaving, on its web site it states you don’t need a visa, if you have:-

  1. A EU family stamp - which is impossible to get.

  2. Your resident card states “Family member” - horrendously expensive to get.

Then says “hard luck” when you are refused boarding, and loose all your money.

They are increasing their sales targets by selling visas to people who by law do not actually need them.

Please advise how I can get some justice, or point me in the direction of someone who beat some sence into these visa agences.

I am afraid you will be up against a brick wall as you will find it very easy difficult to change the system. As it is EU countries have come a long way from how EEA regulations and directives used to be implemented andnhow they are now iimplemented.

I would again advise your spouse to strongly consider applying for British citizenship while the option is stillthere.

The fees keep rising every year and are due to go up again in April. She will have it for life and you will really not have to keep worrying about visa changes and headaches.

All the best
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