Visas Will Soon Be Required For Americans To Travel To Many European Countries

March 8, 2019

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Travelers with American passports can visit nearly anywhere in Europe for a period of up to 90 days without the hassle or costs of getting a visa. But that's all about to change. In two years, Americans will need to apply for something called ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System) in order to enter the continent. The European Commission says the new visas will be enforced as an effort to upgrade international security, effective Jan. 1, 2021. That means if you are planning a trip to 22 European counties including France, Germany, Spain, Iceland and Greece, you will need to apply for a visa starting in 2021. Visits to the United Kingdom and Ireland will not need to apply for this visa. The good news is your ETIAS visa is good for three years, valid for multiple entries and you won't have to apply every time they want to visit. For now the cost of the visa has not been released but Americans wanting to apply for it will need a valid passport, credit or debit card and email address and to be prepared to answer some basic security questions. Last year the Department of Homeland Security similarly changed the U.S. visa waiver program that allows citizens of 38 countries to travel to the U.S. for less than 90 days without needing to now apply for a visa. Those citizens now need a visa to visit.

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SOURCE: Travel + Leisure 

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