The UK government announced on June 8, 2023, that it would be introducing a new Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) scheme for visitors from visa-waiver countries. The ETA will cost £10 (about $12.50) and will be valid for two years. The project is expected to come into effect in 2024.
The UK government says that the ETA will help improve border security and that We can generate income to finance border security and other essential public services. However, some critics have argued that the ETA is an unnecessary additional cost for travellers and could deter people from visiting the UK.
To enter the UK, citizens of 50 specified countries, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and most of Europe, must obtain an ETA. However, if you are from a country that doesn’t require a visa to enter the UK, you can still do so without an ETA.
The ETA will be required for all visitors who are staying in the UK for up to six months. Visitors waiting for extended periods will still need to apply for a visa.
The ETA can be applied online and will be processed within minutes. Visitors who do not have an ETA when they arrive at the UK border will be refused entry.
The UK government says that the ETA will be a “simple and convenient” way for visitors to travel to the UK. However, it remains to be seen how travellers will receive the scheme and whether it will have the desired impact on border security.
UK to charge travellers for entry.
Visa waiver schemes have been around for a while. The United States has the $21 ESTA, valid for two years, and Europe will be introducing the 7 euro ETIAS (about $7.50 on exchange rates this week) in 2024. That one will last you three years.
The United Kingdom, you may recall, rather famously fled the EU coop a few years back. Now it’s revealed the price tag for its scheme, the ETA (Electronic Travel Authorisation): £10 (about $12.50) for two years.
Here are some of the reasons why the UK government is introducing the ETA scheme:
- To improve border security: The ETA will allow the UK government to collect more information about visitors before they arrive in the UK. This information can identify potential threats and prevent people from entering the UK who are not eligible to do so.
- To generate revenue: The ETA will generate revenue that can be used to fund border security and other public services.
- To make it easier for visitors to travel to the UK: The ETA will be a simple and convenient way for visitors to travel to the UK. Visitors will be able to apply for an ETA online and will be able to travel to the UK without having to wait in line at the border.
However, there are also some potential drawbacks to the ETA scheme:
- It could deter people from visiting the UK: The ETA is an additional visitor cost. Some people may decide not to see the UK if they have to pay an additional £10.
- It could be difficult to enforce: The ETA will be a self-declaration scheme. Visitors will be responsible for ensuring they have an ETA before travelling to the UK. It may be easier to enforce the ETA scheme if visitors comply with the rules.
Overall, the ETA scheme is a new way for the UK government to manage its borders. The scheme has the potential to improve border security and to generate revenue. However, there are also some potential drawbacks to the system. It remains to be seen how visitors will receive the ETA scheme and whether it will have the desired impact on border security.
The UK is one of many countries to introduce an entry fee for travellers. The United States has been charging a $14 fee for electronic travel authorization (ESTA) since 2009, and several other countries, including Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, also charge entry fees.
The UK’s new entry fee is expected to generate around £300 million (about $375 million) annually.
The government says that it will use the money to fund several border security initiatives, including:
- Increasing the number of Border Force officers
- Investing in new technology to improve border control
- Working with other countries to share information about travelers
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The government has also said that the money could be used to fund other initiatives, such as:
- Improving the UK’s visa system
- Providing support to victims of modern slavery
- Tackling illegal immigration
The new entry fee has been met with mixed reactions. Some people have welcomed the move, arguing that it is necessary to improve border security and deter illegal immigration. Others have criticized the fee, arguing that it is unfair and will disproportionately impact low-income travelers.
Only time will tell how the new entry fee will impact travel to the UK. However, the government is committed to improving border security and using the money to fund several important initiatives.
The ETA is a new system, and is still being determined how it will work in practice. However, the UK government believes that the ETA will be a valuable tool for improving security and making it easier for visitors to enter the UK.
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