What is the ETIAS? First, a little background.
If traveling to Europe for business or pleasure for no more than 90 days in a 6-month period, Americans do not need a visa. However, by the end of 2022, Americans will need a travel authorization.
Most European countries are part of the Schengen Zone--a cooperation agreement between 26 countries in Europe--and in the Schengen Agreement Americans are granted a visa waiver for business or leisure travel of up to 90 days.
But by the end of 2022, Americans will be required to apply, pay for, and receive a travel authorization known as ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System). The application can be made online, and will be simple, inexpensive, and usually approved within minutes.
Once granted, the ETIAS will be valid for 3 years unless the traveler’s passport expires in the meantime.
Don’t let that rub you the wrong way--the USA has required something similar of Europeans since 2009.
We'll update you with more news on the ETIAS as the system is officially rolled out.
In the meantime, why not plan your European getaway now?