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I am a dual UK / Irish citizen currently living in the UK. I like to carry my Irish passport card as it is small and convenient. I could hop on a plane, train, or boat to the EU (and some more countries) without going home to get my passport book. However, this is in doubt now as I have heard that EU ID cards can no longer be used to enter the UK. The Irish DFA site suggests that it is still valid. However, this is not a UK government site and hence it might be out of date or incorrect. At the least, it is probably unconvincing to a UK border official.

If I cannot reenter the UK then the value of the card to me will be diminished significantly.

Note that I am not only asking about entering the UK from Ireland but also from other countries where my passport card is accepted.

I have now figured it out but I thought that it might be useful to others so I plan to self answer.

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  • Using an Irish passport card to enter the UK will mean you can't use the e-gates and will have to join the "family/Under 12 year old" queue which will be lengthy during school holiday times.
    – canonacer
    Jul 15, 2022 at 17:29
  • Indeed and for a planned trip, I would bring my UK passport or my full sized Irish one. The attraction of the card is being able to make an unplanned trip without going home to get anything.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 19:56

2 Answers 2

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As an Irish citizen, you have free movement and working rights in either countries of the CTA (Common Travel Area) if you hold a document that can prove your citizenship and identity.

According to the UK FCO

You don’t need to show your passport to a Border Force officer when travelling from Ireland to Great Britain. However, you may be asked to show a document that confirms your identity and nationality.

This could include:

  • a valid passport or passport card (if you’re Irish)
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  • Thanks. I never had any doubts about my right to enter the UK but just whether the Irish passport card would be accepted. Also, I should have been clearer that I was not just asking about entering the UK from Ireland. I have added a clarification to my question.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 9:23
  • Your reference is good but not as general as the one that I found. Based on yours alone, I might feel the need to go from Paris to London via Dublin rather than direct. My personal experience is that travel between Ireland and the UK has always been easy. Often, I am not challenged at all. If I am then a driving licence or even a convincing British accent is usually enough. On the contrary, entering the UK from a third country with an Irish passport is not always smooth.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 9:36
  • I have doubts that anything else than a passport will land you in the UK when coming from a third country Jul 15, 2022 at 10:23
  • I quite expect that it would be tricky but the page that I found would seem to suggest that it should be possible.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 15:27
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I have not tested this but it seems that it should be possible.

The Get a Passport Card page on the Irish DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs) site claims that it is still possible to enter the UK with a passport card. However, this is not a UK government site so it might be out of date or incorrect. Even if it is correct, it might be unconvincing to a UK border official.

I found a page on the UK government site on the subject. It is fairly clear that, in general, you cannot enter the UK with an EU ID card. There are complex exemptions but I was struggling to figure out whether they applied to me. However, when I read down far enough, I found this clear statement:

Irish citizens can continue to use a passport card to travel to the UK.

Visiting the UK as an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen (UK government site)

So, for the particular case of Ireland, the passport card should still be valid but I would not be surprised if it was questioned. For other, EU ID cards, the simple answer is no.

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  • “If it was questioned” - by whom?
    – JonathanReez
    Jul 15, 2022 at 19:33
  • Border officials. I have personally experienced extra scrutiny when entering the UK with a full sized Irish passport than with a UK one. Entering with a less familiar document is hardly likely to be easier. Oddly, this extra scrutiny only occurs when coming from a third country.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 19:52
  • But it’s like 20 extra seconds at the border? Sounds like a nothing burger.
    – JonathanReez
    Jul 15, 2022 at 20:00
  • I don't know what a "nothing burger" is. It is not a big deal but is has slowed me up by more than 20 seconds some times.
    – badjohn
    Jul 15, 2022 at 20:03

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