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Brexit

Ah Brexit; easy to say, not so easy to understand.

On the 24th of June 2016, the day after a referendum was held on whether or not the United Kingdom should leave the European Union the most Googled phrase in the UK was “what is Brexit?” Two years since Article 50 (see definitions below) was officially invoked and nearly 5 months after the initial deadline to triumphantly turn tail and leave the EU expired, plenty of people are still asking themselves that same question.

If you’re like most Aussies that are pretty confused by the whole situation, check out the articles and info below and you’ll be up to speed in no time (Full disclosure - we were pretty confused by the whole thing for a while too).

Whilst we can’t guarantee what will happen with Brexit, we can make sure it doesn’t leave a dint in your holiday travel money.

Brexit

Read on to be in the know

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Brexit glossary for those playing at home

Brexit is a few things

For starters, it’s a portmanteau; a smashing together of “British” and “Exit” to create the Frankenstein monster that is Brexit. But unlike Brangelina, Chillax and Bodacious, Brexit evokes feelings of anticipointment (the feeling of letdown one experiences when hype gives way to reality) in almost anyone that reads or hears it. It is something that is so simple, yet so complex at the same time. Who’d have thought International relations and trade negotiations could be this hard right?

It’s also something that has been a bit of a thorn in the side of the GBP and economic performance of the UK. Since Brexit was announced the Pound has yo-yoed against most major currencies, dropping consistently against the AUD each time another setback occurs or an MP says something mildly concerning.

Glossary

Tired of all the Brexit jargon and seemingly made up words? We’ve tried to help out a little bit with some basic terms to get you up to scratch on Brexit translations.

Article 50

Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union is a procedure in the treaty that sets out how member states can leave the Union, with a two-year timetable for leaving. Article 50 was triggered by Prime Minister Theresa May at the end of March 2017.

Backstop

There is currently no hard border separating Northern Island and Southern Island and the Backstop agreement was made between former PM, Theresa May and the EU to ensure that stays the same way post Brexit.
Brexiteer: People who support Brexit are called leavers or Brexiteers. Kind of like puppeteers, but with no idea how to make things move.

Customs Union

Is an agreement where two or more countries agree not to impose taxes (or tariffs) on imported goods from one another.

Divorce Bill

The money the UK agrees to pay to the EU for the pleasure of leaving the region. Under the old deal negotiated by Theresa May this bill is around 39,000,000GBP, or around $70 million Australian Dollars. Should have got a pre-nup!

Free movement

This lets European citizens travel, study and work freely between member countries. Something at stake for UK citizens if a hard or no-deal Brexit were to occur.

Hard and soft Brexit

This is the part of the movie where Clint Eastwood says to the bad guy ‘we can do this the easy way, or we can do this the hard way’ and inevitably the bad guy chooses the hard way because the easy way doesn’t sell movie tickets. Also described as a no-deal Brexit, a hard Brexit means leaving the EU with no trade deals, take your ball and go home style. This is what economists and UK businesses fear the most of all Brexit scenarios.

Referendum

After the first referendum went to the people in 2016, many Politicians, businesses and action groups have called for a second referendum to be held in order to give the people of the UK a second chance to vote on Brexit after getting a firsthand look into just how complicated it is.

Remainer

Those who want to stay in the EU despite the referendum result. Also labelled ‘Remoaners’ by the hardcore Leavers because apparently they are moaning all the time about the right mess Brexit is causing.

Withdrawal agreement

Former PM, Theresa May negotiated a deal with the EU to leave on a number of agreed terms. These terms were shot down on a number of occasions by the UK Parliament for various reasons, leading to May standing down in July 2019. The agreement covers things like trade deals, borders and flow of workers and tourists between the UK and Europe along with much more. The EU has already said a new deal will not be brokered with a new PM and the last deal was as good as it gets.

With a handy set of Brexit translations, you’re ready for the next steps in your Brexit discovery journey. Check out our Brexit information pages to see how Brexit affects Aussie travellers and for more information about what everyone is getting their knickers in a knot about.