If traveling to the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland) for business or pleasure for up to 6-months (90 days for leisure travel), Americans do not need a visa. However, by 2024, Americans will need a travel authorization.
What does that mean?
People traveling to the UK without a visa (ie, Americans) will soon need to get an Electronic Travel Authorization or ETA.
Don’t let that rub you the wrong way--the USA has required something similar of Europeans since 2009.
The ETA will be required for some nationalities earlier in the year, but the launch date for American travelers is still undetermined.
How to apply
You’ll need to apply on the UK ETA app, or online on GOV.UK. Each traveler must get their own ETA, including children and babies. You’ll usually get a decision within 3 working days, but you may get a quicker decision.
It may take longer than 3 working days if further checks are required.
How much it costs
An ETA will cost £10 per applicant.
How you’ll get your ETA
You’ll get an email confirmation if your application is approved. Your ETA will be linked electronically to the passport you applied with. You must use the same passport to travel.
After you get your ETA
Your ETA will last for 2 years. If your passport expires in less than 2 years, you’ll need to get a new ETA.
You can use the ETA to make multiple visits to the UK. You still need to either use an ePassport gate if you’re eligible or see a Border Force officer to enter the UK.
An ETA does not guarantee entry to the UK.
For updates and more information, visit Gov.UK
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