Regular readers of my column will know that I rarely write about the same topic twice. However, this month I return to the topic of holidays – although by the time this goes to print these may seem like a distant memory!
I know that many of my readers are not separating or not even thinking of getting divorced but read the articles as often the topics affect us all. Such was the case with the article I wrote in the early part of the summer about taking children on holiday without both parents.
Just to recap, I was highlighting the fact that if as a parent you are, for whatever reason, travelling abroad with your children without their second parent it is necessary to obtain specific written consent to take the child or children out of the country. This consent should include the basic terms of the holiday including dates, location, contact details etc. and should be taken with you to the airport, available to be produced if necessary.
My article was picked up by a number of other publications and on line sites which prompted some interesting feedback, many highlighting that parents are being stopped at airports and ports and questioned quite regularly.
One such response came back to me from someone who works at one of the main airports who supported my advice and commented that they are becoming much stricter in checking ‘Parental consent’ for those leaving the country with children and this is likely to increase as concerns around the criminal offence of child abduction rise.
One additional point which was raised was that the position is no different if two parents are travelling together with their family and also taking a friend of their child’s on holiday without his or her own parents. The need to take written consent from the parent of the child’s friend is exactly the same.
These rules and the checks safeguard all of our children so it is a positive to have them in place – my advice is just to prepare this consent ahead of the holidays so that any questions raised at the airport do not cause problems.
It’s great when one of my articles creates some further discussion as it’s good to know someone is reading them (!), and I am always keen to hear if you have any comments to add. Please do email me if you have either comments to make or have an idea for a topic you would like me to write about.
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