US Citizens Need Visas for Europe in 2024: What to Know
If you’re planning a trip to Europe in 2024, there’s a new requirement you should be aware of. Previously, you could travel to Europe without a visa. But now you’ll need to apply for authorization through the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) before your visit.
It doesn’t seem to be too complicated of a process. You’ll find the application form on the official ETIAS website or a mobile app. It costs 7 euros or around $7.79 in U.S. dollars. Once you’re approved, you can stay in European countries requiring ETIAS for up to 90 days within any 180-day period. Take a look at the European countries that require ETIAS here.
The good news is that most applications are processed within minutes. But if it takes longer, you should get a decision within four days, and in some cases, up to 14 days if they need more documentation, according to ETIAS.
Remember to apply well before your trip and keep your confirmation email with a unique number for reference. Double-check all your info because any mistake could mess up your plans at the border.
Your ETIAS authorization is valid for three years or until your travel document (like your U.S. passport) expires. And speaking of passports, you’ll need both your passport and ETIAS authorization to board a flight, bus, or ship to enter European countries with ETIAS requirements.
But, like with passports, ETIAS doesn’t guarantee entry. The border guards will still check if you meet the entry conditions, so make sure you’re all set before you go.
The change in U.S. citizens’ entry visas for Europe sparked a mix of reactions. A dedicated Reddit thread emerged to discuss the new requirements. One Redditor wrote, “Europeans and others have had to apply for a similar visa waiver ESTA to enter the US for years (which costs more at 21 dollars), so this is somewhat reciprocal.”
Someone else pointed out a potential impact on movie culture, saying that “The only thing this will change is Hollywood movies where someone races to the airport and buys a last-minute ticket to Paris. Now they will have to add a scene where they sit down for 5 minutes and fill out an online form.”
Learn more about the process directly from the European Union here.