Starting in 2021 there will be some minor changes that will add a minor hassle and fee for American’s that want to enter parts of Europe. The changes are likely due to similar changes to how America has changed its entrance requirements. In total it should add maybe 10 minutes and about $8 to your trip planning, but fortunately once you’ve done this it will be 3 more years before you’ll need to do it again.
US citizens visiting parts of Europe will need authorization from the European Union come 2021.The EU announced last year it was creating a European Travel Information and Authorization System, or ETIAS, that will require “pre-travel screening for security and migration risks of travelers benefiting from visa-free access to the Schengen area.”The Schengen Area is a zone of 26 European countries that do not have internal borders and allow people to move between them freely, including countries such as Spain, France, Greece, Germany, Italy and Poland.Currently, US citizens can travel to Europe for up to 90 days without any sort of travel authorization. ETIAS will change that.Visa-free travelers, including US citizens, will need to request ETIAS authorization before visiting the Schengen Area. They can complete an application and pay a service fee of 7 euros (about $8) online. The authorization is valid for three years.“Completing the online application should not take more than 10 minutes with automatic approval being given in over 95% of cases,” the European Commission said in a statement.