Along with the EU adding new travel rules for tourists, the UK has decided to introduce its own pre-entry scheme. Americans visiting Britain will soon be charged a fee prior to boarding their flights.
The Electronic System for Travel Authorization is becoming increasingly popular, where cross-border movements are frequent. Countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand have already adopted such and the UK is the latest to join the list.
Leading the country’s new border policies has been Home Secretary Priti Patel, who has enacted a series of measures to strengthen security. Ever since Brexit, the government has tightened immigration and aligned itself with more conservative British voters.
Set to be trialed in 2023 and fully implemented by 2024, ‘Permission to Travel’ will require all foreigners to apply for an ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) before traveling. The only ones who don’t are those on a short-term visa.
While the system is not yet operational, tourists will apply through the U.K. Government’s official website and be required to provide the below information:
Online ‘suitability question’ questionnaire to fill out
It is being reported that an ETA will cost £18, or close to $21, but unclear how long it will be valid for. This new scheme applies only to non-visa nationals, while tourists from other countries requiring a visa still need to apply for one at a British Consulate in their country of residence.
The ETA will be trialed as soon as March 2023, as the UK wants to make sure its border is ‘fit for the 21st century…while maintaining national security. The following nationalities will be the first to require authorization to travel: