Starting from 2024, the European Union will necessitate pre-authorization for travelers through the European Travel Information and Authorization System, thereby concluding the longstanding tradition of visa-free travel.
All travelers, including those from the United States, will need to file an ETIAS application at an approximate cost of $8. The application will demand details such as passport information, accommodation arrangements, educational qualification, current employment, criminal records, and several other information for gaining entry.
Though the processing is typically completed within minutes, there might be some unexpected delays. Therefore, travelers are suggested to apply well ahead of time.
Applicants can anticipate an update within four days; however, the procedure could stretch from two weeks to a full month. If approved, the clearance will last up to three years or until the visitor’s passport expires, according to the report in the NY Post.
“With a valid ETIAS travel authorization, you can enter the territory of these European countries as often as you want for short-term stays — normally for up to 90 days in any 180-day period,” the EU website reads. “However, it does not guarantee entry. When you arrive, a border guard will ask to see your passport and other documents and verify that you meet the entry conditions.”
According to Peter Greenberg, CBS News travel editor, nothing is stopping the United States from establishing a similar visa system. “It won’t be complicated, it’s just an annoyance,” he said. “Most Americans, in fact, all Americans, are not used to doing this to go to Europe so there’s going to be lots of surprises at boarding gates with people being denied boarding over the first couple of weeks if this goes into effect.”