Can You Travel Alone At 17 In Europe?

Tips for traveling alone at 17 in Europe

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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.

Can You Travel Alone At 17 In Europe?

Traveling alone at 17 in Europe is acceptable, provided you have valid documentation.

Travel alone teen Europe guide
Traveling alone teens Europe

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.

Teens solo travel packing
Get your kids ready for solo travel

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.

Tips for traveling alone at 16 in Europe
Traveling alone at 16 in Europe

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.

Airlines rules about minors flying guide
Airlines rules about minors flying

Below is a summary of the policies of different airlines regarding minors flying alone.

AirlineAge Limit for Minors Flying Alone
American Airlines15 years
Aer Lingus12 years with a complete indemnity form
British Airways12 years
Cathay Pacific12 years
Delta Airlines15 years
Emirates15 years
EasyJet14 years
Iberia12 years
KLM15 years
Lufthansa12 years
Singapore Airlines12 years
Swiss12 years
Virgin Atlantic12 years
Wizz Air14 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.

Traveling solo teens in Europe
Talking to your child about traveling alone in Europe

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. 

4. Communication

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.

Tips for traveling alone at 15 in Europe
Traveling alone in Europe

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

Final Thoughts

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.

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