I’m sure you’ve all heard, but let’s still do a recap, and if you haven’t heard, you need to! Especially if you plan on going to Europe in 2024, 2025 or any year after that. Coming in 2024, it won’t be so easy to enter the main travel hotspots that have been seriously benefitting from American travelers for years. (i.e. Italy, Greece, France, Spain, + 20 more) The EU is working to secure its border security, therefore, is requiring ETIAS* documents from people coming into their territory. The normal has allowed travelers to be granted access through, “virtue of their good track record” but the EU believes it’s time to make things official.
*What’s ETIAS? The European Travel Information and Authorisation System
Let’s break it down:
Who: Travelers who do not require a visa to visit EU countries will require an ETIAS.
What: The form will check security credentials to guarantee safety and charge fees to travelers who are visiting for work, tourism or medical purposes.
Where: Applied to EU Schengen member states (listed below)
When: Set place to begin 2024.
Why: To enforce safety along the borders of the EU.
There will be a €7 fee for all travelers. However, if you’re younger than 18 or older than 70, woohoo- no fee for you!
The ETIAS will cover the current “EU Schengen member states” which are:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden. Also including future Schengen countries which are Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, and Romania.
“What’s the difference between the European Union and the Schengen zone?” – The EU is an economic and political union of a cluster of European countries whereas the Schengen Area is a “travel zone of European countries where citizens can travel freely without a passport or visa”.
The decision making process, once you apply, can take anywhere from minutes, to hours, to weeks, to years. Depends on if extra documentation is needed, or more checks are required.
So keep reading and keep watching for what travel documents are needed to apply, how far in advance you need to apply, etc. and for all your super planners, it’ll sting but, no applications are being taken until 2024 so no need to hustle just yet!
For more information, read more at ETIAS.com and European Union.