The EU has confirmed that it is ending visa-free travel to the bloc for UK passport-holders. Its visa waiver policy will officially be introduced next May when UK visitors will have to pay for a new electronic permit.
The scheme – known as ETIAS – has been introduced to improve security and re-enforce the borders of the Schengen zone which includes most EU nations in mainland Europe. It is expected to cost UK holidaymakers around seven euros which must be paid in advance of a trip.
Travellers from the UK will also need to complete an online application form to obtain their ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorisation System). If their ETIAS application is not approved, British citizens could be denied entry, once the scheme is implemented.
Approval should be granted “within minutes,” for an estimated 95 per cent of applicants, according to a new memo issued by the EU. The maximum time needed for approval could be up to a month in “very exceptional cases.”
The ETIAS permit will be valid for an unlimited number of entries within a three-year period. However, holders must abide by immigration and not overstay in their destination. Currently, visitors from third-party nations cannot stay more than 90 days in the bloc, for every 180-day period.
There are a number of reasons people could see their application denied, reports the Liverpool ECHO.
According to Schengen Visa Info, applications may be turned down on the following grounds:
- The person applying has used a travel document that is reported as lost, stolen, misappropriated or invalidated in the Schengen Information System – SIS II
- The applicant poses a security risk for the citizens and travellers of the Schengen Area
- The applicant poses an illegal immigration risk
- The applicant poses a high epidemic risk
- An applicant is a person for whom there is an existing alert in SIS for the purpose of refusing entry and stay
- The applicant fails to reply to a request for extra information or documentation within the deadline given
- The applicant fails to attend an extra interview when required
A travel authorisation can also be rejected in cases where there are reasonable and serious doubts about the authenticity of the information given and the supporting documents submitted by the person applying.
Applicants will receive a decision within minutes, and if an ETIAS request is denied the email will contain details as to why this happened. Travellers will be able to appeal the decision if they wish.