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You May Need A Visa To Travel To Europe Starting This Year. What To Know
U.S. Citizens have had no need for the European Schengen visa before, however, the requirements are now changing for tourists.
There is currently a change of requirements taking place for the process of travel for people from the U.S. who want to visit Europe. It’s called the ETIAS, (European Travel Information and Authorization System). It was supposed to go into effect this month but is now being pushed back until the end of the year and will not be required until six months into 2023. This is due to delays caused by the EES (Entry/Exit System), according to a European Commission spokesperson. EES is an electronic system that keeps track of visitors as they cross borders, and it is a prerequisite for the launch of the new visa program.
As previously reported, the European Union has decided to change its rules to protect its borders from ongoing terrorism threats, so they can have better control over outside travelers before their arrival into the EU.
This applies to those entering any member country of Europe’s Schengen Zone. As of now, these qualifications will be set in place for the safety of the citizens of the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. The microstates of San Marino, Vatican City, and Monaco will also require registration.
While Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Cyprus aren’t currently Schengen countries, they are in the process of joining and will be subject to the same requirements once they do. However, there are still many European nations that aren’t part of the Schengen Zone, mostly in Eastern Europe.
That means you’ll still be able to travel to Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, and Ukraine without an ETIAS.
According to The Schengen Visa, you’ll need a valid passport, an email address, and a debit or credit card to pay the nonrefundable €7 application fee (there are no other fees associated with the program) for the ETIAS application. It will be valid for three years—or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.
Currently, more than 60 countries will be required to have an ETIAS for access to countries within the Schengen Zone.