News that British holidaymakers will be charged €7 to visit the EU after Brexit has sparked a furious social media reaction – prompting calls to charge Europeans for coming to the UK.
The backlash comes after an announcement that UK citizens will have to purchase a security check known as the European Travel Information and Authorization System when travelling to the continent.
Under the system, travellers would have to apply online by providing personal information and passport details, before noting the first country they are travelling to and answering background questions.
A spokeswoman for Jean-Claude Juncker (pictured last night) confirmed that a new visa system for visiting the bloc will apply after Brexit if no other agreement is reached
Theresa May travelled to Brussels today to seek more concessions from the EU, but just hours after arriving news broke of the new charge to be levied on UK citizens
But reaction to the news has been mixed with dozens taking to Twitter to complain about the upcoming charge.
Lynette Craig said: ‘So we are going to need an ETIAS to go to an EU country. What happened to passports?
‘And will they use the dosh for helping migrants or just for better wine at dinner?’
While Ian Jones said: ‘Let’s charge the Europeans £6 to come here’.
Not everyone was angered by the news, however. With some suggesting it was only fair we had to pay.
Erecan Essilor said: ‘No doubt ETIAS will get all the remainers in a froth but this is an extremely small price to pay for the money Brexit saves.’
While Vincent Franklin said: ‘So, we’ll have to buy an ETIAS if we want to visit Europe. It seems like they’re getting control of their borders back.’
Several on Twitter have expressed anger at the news they will have to fork out on travel to Europe. But others were more sympathetic to the news saying it was only fair we should pay (above and below). A three year travel pass would cost €7 – around £6
Brussels confirmed the charges will be levied on UK citizens as Theresa May fought for more concessions on her deal at a summit.
A spokeswoman for Jean-Claude Juncker confirmed that the new system for visiting the bloc will apply to the UK after Brexit.
Natasha Bertaud, Mr Juncker’s spokeswoman, tweeted: ‘Yes Etias will apply to the UK as 3rd country post-Brexit – 7 euros for a 3 year pre-travel authorisation.
‘Simple form, like Esta to the US, but way cheaper.’
What is ETIAS? The new security check that will come into force in 2021
ETIAS stands for European Travel Information and Authorization System, it is a form of electronic travel authorization.
From 2021, visitors travelling to the Schengen Area will need to obtain an ETIAS travel authorization prior to their trip.
It is designed to improve the security of the region by screening travellers before their arrival in the Schengen Area.
The process will determine whether a citizen can enter the Schengen Area or not.
By cross-checking information against various databases, the system will be able to detect if a person is a security threat.
The new electronic system means that travellers from Britain will be treated in the same way as those from the US and Australia.
A three year travel pass would cost €7 – around £6. And will be levied despite no-deal plans released by the EU last month stating UK citizens will be handed a visa exemption.
Responding to the news, shadow arts minister Kevin Brennan said: ‘This will have a direct effect on British families, holidaymakers, and those travelling for work.
‘The Government should listen to the tourism sector’s warnings and urgently reconsider this disastrous Brexit deal.’
The ETIAS regime will apply to nationals visiting from almost all non-EU countries – an estimated 39million people a year.
The registration information will then be checked against EU crime-fighting databases.
While most decisions will take just minutes, problematic cases could lead to further requests before being finally answered within four weeks.
The EU commission previously announced that anyone staying less than 90 days will be able to visit freely as long as the UK reciprocates.
While stressing that it would need to be approved by the European Parliament, the commission said: ‘In the scenario where the UK leaves the EU without a deal, this would apply as of 30 March 2019.
‘If a deal is reached, however, it would apply as of the end of the transition period.’
The move was ‘entirely conditional upon the UK also granting reciprocal and non-discriminatory visa-free travel for all EU member states’.
UK citizens will have to pay a small fee for EU travel after Brexit, the European Commission has confirmed
The Association of British Travel Agents warned UK citizens not to be too panicked by the news, stressing that it does not come into force until 2021.
An ABTA spokeswoman said: ‘Europe is the number one destination people plan to visit next year, so it’s really important holidaymakers are aware that the new ETIAS system won’t apply until 2021.
‘When it does apply ETIAS will mean that you don’t have to get a visa. There have been some helpful reassurances recently that, even in a no-deal scenario, flights will still operate between the UK and EU, and a visa is not required.’
The EU again raised the prospect of UK holidaymakers needing to pay a fee to visit the bloc