Kids are adventurous young humans who crave going to new places and learning new things.
A time will come when your kid will want to travel away from home alone with their friends.
This is a dreadful time for every parent, and it’s more worrisome if the destination is far.
While you cannot keep your child with you, or should you, you must consider their safety before letting them explore the world.
Also, can your kids travel alone at 17 or younger in Europe?
Find out below.
Table of Contents
- 1 Can You Travel Alone At 17 In Europe?
- 2 Can You Travel Alone At 15 and 16 In Europe?
- 3 Rules for Minors Flying on Different Airlines
- 4 How to Prepare Your Minors to Travel Alone In Europe
- 5 Safety Rules For Minors Traveling In Europe
- 6 Final Thoughts
Can You Travel Alone At 17 In Europe?
Traveling alone at 17 in Europe is acceptable, provided you have valid documentation.
Besides your ID card and passport, you may require an additional document signed by your legal guardian, parent, or second parent authorizing you to travel.
Each European country decides if it requires children traveling alone to have authorization documents from their parents.
Therefore, confirm the rules of the specific country if you travel alone at 17 in Europe to ensure stress-free travel.
Remember that while some countries do not require extra documentation to get into their territories, other places you may transit through could need it.
Thus, it is best to be prepared beforehand.
You must also check the requirements of the mode of transport you intend to use in your travels.
For Instance – Children aged 16- 18 can travel alone unsupervised using Eurostar provided they have the standard travel documents- a passport and a Eurostar ticket.
Can You Travel Alone At 15 and 16 In Europe?
15 and 16-year-olds can travel in Europe unaccompanied as long as they have the needed documents.
These are a passport and/or a consent letter from their parents or legal guardians.
You must also ensure your child can handle the journey.
As mentioned earlier, the transportation mode also dictates the type of documents a minor needs to travel based on age.
Keep In Mind – Those under 16 traveling on Eurostar need a passport, Eurostar ticket, and a signed authorization form by their parents or guardians.
Rules for Minors Flying on Different Airlines
You must know different airlines’ age limits for minors flying alone if your child is to travel by air across other European countries.
This information is necessary since the rules vary drastically from one airline to another.
Below is a summary of the policies of different airlines regarding minors flying alone.
|Airline||Age Limit for Minors Flying Alone|
|American Airlines||15 years|
|Aer Lingus||12 years with a complete indemnity form|
|British Airways||12 years|
|Cathay Pacific||12 years|
|Delta Airlines||15 years|
|Singapore Airlines||12 years|
|Virgin Atlantic||12 years|
|Wizz Air||14 years|
How to Prepare Your Minors to Travel Alone In Europe
Your teen may be ready, comfortable, and confident to travel alone, but are you?
This is something you must ask yourself and consider everything before arriving at an answer.
If the answer is yes, you must make preparations to ensure your child has a good time exploring different parts of Europe and remains safe.
1. Get Documentation Ready
Your kid will need a valid passport, so if they do not have one, help them apply for one.
Also, prepare a consent form to show that they have your permission to travel alone.
Ensure you notarize every letter needed for their travels. Also, get them a zippered bag or money belt to keep their passport safe.
2. Research Their Destinations
For your child’s safety and peace of mind, you ought to know where your kid will be in Europe.
It would be best to research these areas to find the safe parts and the ones they should avoid.
Additionally – You can talk to friends and family members who have been there to discover what to expect.
3. Gather Essential Items
Help your child pack to ensure they have everything they need for the trip.
These include multiple pairs of shorts, pants, walking shoes, a jacket or coat, short and long-sleeved tops, underwear, and a sweater.
Make sure they also pack a dressy outfit, just in case.
Ensure toiletries do not overpack; sunscreen and medications are a must.
Ensure your child stays in touch with you during their trip.
This means having a good phone with enough call minutes to facilitate smooth communication.
Safety Rules For Minors Traveling In Europe
Since your parent or guardian will not be around, you are responsible for your safety.
Adhere to the following safety rules:
- Avoid suspicious areas- walk on well-lit streets that are not abandoned.
- Ensure your backpack is with you; put it between your legs when seated. Carry a bag with straps that you can fasten across your body.
- Do not keep your valuables together– separate your passport, credit cards, and money. Also, leave valuable items like expensive jewelry at home.
- Learn some words in the local language, like “please” and “thank you.”
- Keep your phone’s location turned on.
- Do not drink too much alcohol
Traveling is an exciting time for young people, and the ages of 15, 16, 17, and 18 are when kids get interested in traveling alone.
While minors aged 15 and above can travel in Europe, they must be competent and prioritize their safety.
Parents should also get them ready for solo travel.
- When’s the Best Time to Visit Rome? Catch It at Its Best
- When’s the Best Time to Visit Paris? A Seasonal Guide
- Amalfi Coast 5-Day Itinerary | A Taste of Paradise
- 4 Days in Barcelona: A Guide to the Best Sites & Activities
- Best Beaches in Ischia for Couples and Families
- Is Perpignan Worth Visiting? Discover the Best of the City