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Permits (visitors or temporary permits)

The rules and guidance for travelling with a European Firearms Pass or sponsoring a visitor from the EU have changed. UK residents travelling to EU countries with their firearm or shotgun are no longer able to use a European Firearms Pass and should contact the authorities of the countries concerned for information about their licensing requirements. If you are sponsoring an EU visitor to the UK, you should continue to apply to the local police force, for a Visitor's Permit. Permits issued before the UK leaves the EU will remain valid until they expire. Further advice from the Home Office can be obtained by following the link below.


Visitors Permits

 Under Section 17 of the Firearms Act 1988, visitors to Great Britain may, if they are granted the appropriate permit, have in their possession firearms, shotguns or ammunition without holding a certificate, specifically:

  • A visitor’s firearm permit which allows them to have in their possession any firearm and purchase, acquire or have in their possession any ammunition, to which section 1 of the 1968 act applies.
  • A visitor’s shotgun permit which allows them to have in their possession, purchase or acquire shotguns.

A visitor’s permit is valid for use throughout Great Britain for a period of up to twelve months, a separate permit for each force area is not required.

Applications will be made by a sponsor, to the chief officer of police for the area in which the sponsor resides. They may be a private individual or the representative of a club, shooting syndicate, country estate or national shooting organisation.


Applications for visitor permits are required 6-8 weeks prior to the visitor coming into the UK to allow the sponsor to forward the permit to the visitor.

Certificate type Fee (payable to ‘PCC for North Yorkshire’)
Visitors Permit x1 £20
Visitors Permit x2 £40
Visitors Permit x3 £60
Visitors Permit x4 £80
Visitors Permit x 5 – 20 in the same group. £100

If more than 20 visitors, please refer to the table for extra fees (ie. 21 visitors = £120 etc)… 

Please also note – if a visitor is bringing firearm(s) and shotgun(s), this is classed as 2 visitors permit.

Temporary Permits

Chief Officers of Police are authorised to issue a temporary permit to suitable persons, who are in possession of a weapon, in circumstances when it would not be appropriate to issue a firearm or shotgun certificate. For example – the relative or executor of a deceased certificate holder.

Permits may also be issued where the renewal or variation of a certificate has been delayed, but through no fault of the certificate holder. It does not cover an applicant or referee, who through their own un-cooperation is responsible for the delay.


From date of request within five working days.

Application for a Visitor Permit[pdf]