The EU has put new visa for Britons back until next year. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


British travellers and the Spanish tourist boards are breathing a sigh of relief after the European Union has confirmed that the launch of the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) has been postponed again, this time until 2024, without giving an exact date, or even month.

The delay has happened without any official warning or announcement by the EU, they have simply changed the date on the EU Commission’s Migration and Home Affairs website from November 2023 to 2024.

“It is expected that the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) will be operational in 2024,” the website states.

Similar to the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) required to visit the US, anyone between the ages of 18 and 70 will need an ETIAS.

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The new scheme was announced after the UK left the EU and was meant to launch in 2021.
However, it was then delayed to November 2023 - and has since been postponed again to next year.
The official website states: “Starting from 2024, some 1.4 billion people from over 60 visa-exempt countries are required to have a travel authorisation to enter most European countries.”

When enforced, the ETIAS visa will cost €7 (£6.10) and lasts for three years or until your passport expires.
The scheme has been criticised by the Spanish tourist authorities. Tourism leaders have sounded a warning about losing millions of Britons if the European Union introduced the new tourist tax later this year. Spanish Tourism Board is particularly concerned about the impact of this tax on British tourism, “our main outbound market with 18 million arrivals in 2019”.

It should also be borne in mind that the measure, should it go ahead, will be added to the other local tourist taxes that tourists are already paying for visiting certain Spanish destinations likes the Balearics.

“We are issuing a warning in relation to these two issues that seem to be going unnoticed, but which constitute two potential threats to the competitiveness of the Spanish tourism sector,” said the president of the Mesa del Turismo, Juan Molas.