Get ready… US citizens will need a visa to go to Europe as of 2024

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Visa-free travel for American citizens to Europe will become a thing of the past by 2024.

The European Union announced on Friday that US travelers will require new type of visa, to travel to the European Union.

The Travel Information and Authorization System, or ETIAS, will be required for Americans in order to visit Europe’s Schengen Zone.

The Schengen area includes 26 European countries that don’t have internal borders, and allow people to move freely between them, including countries such as Spain, France, Greece, Germany, Italy and Poland.

Currently, US citizens can travel to Europe for up to 90 days without a visa.

The European Union stated on the “ETIAS” website that it had recently decided to improve its level of security to avoid any further problems related to illegal immigration and terrorism.

The United States has been in dispute with the European Union Parliament and the European Commission over visas to Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland, Romania and Cyprus.

Travelers from those five countries are the only European countries the United States requires to apply for a visa.

EU rules require equal treatment for all member states, but the report also noted that the Commission was willing to wait until after President Trump is in office to induce full visa reciprocity.

In June 2018, EU Parliament voted in favor of the EU Commission imposing visas on US citizens.

Therefore, the EU Commission’s decision was taken on the principle of reciprocity.

 

The procedures and the requirements

To apply for an ETIAS visa, US citizens will need a valid passport, an email account, and a credit or debit card, according to the EU.

Minors will need their regular passports for travel only after the visas go into effect.

Applying for the ETIAS visa will be online, and it will cost $8.

The approval for the application will take time between 10 minutes up to (96 Hours) 4 days.

The union said the ETIAS visa is valid for 3 years and will allow US citizens to enter the Schengen Zone as multiple times as necessary, and it will be required also for the transit US travelers, of those who are taking different destination, but they are bypassing the EU.

At the application, the applier will need to answer several question, as:

  • Basic information
  • Travel plans
  • Travel History
  • Security questions

Airlines companies must check and make sure that US travelers to the EU already have ETIAS visa, before they allow them to boarding.

According to EU commission, the process will be very simple and easy; however, US travelers might face problems at first, due to the fact that not all Americans might have the knowledge of this new procedure, so they will simply arrive to the Airport unaware of the new system.

Therefore, some “chaos” might occur at the beginning of applying this new system.

 

What if the application was declined?

An email will arrive to the applicants informing them that their application was declined, and provide them reasons of the decline.

Then, the email will provide the applicants the steps which they need to follow, in order to “How to apply for objection or appeal against the application declined decision”.

Finally, the EU commission announcement stated, that the new system will be applied as January, 2024.

It’s worth noting, the United States passport currently hold the 4th rank according to Passport index, as US passport holders can visit 173 countries without applying for visa.

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