It’ll cost £6 to travel to the EU and some will need to pay £129 to go to America… if they’ve visited Cuba: These are the travel rules for 2023 Britons NEED to swot up on
- America has changed its Esta rules for those who’ve been to Cuba after 2011
- From next November most British travellers to Europe will need an ‘Etias’ pass
- The knock-on effect of Etias passes could be lengthy queues at border checks
There are lots of new travel rules to swot up on – including America’s new Esta edicts
Mark Twain once wrote: ‘Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness.’ That said, it helps to know the latest travel rules to avoid any complications. Here’s our 2023 guide…
INDIAN E-VISAS RETURN
During the pandemic, India changed its entry requirements for Britons, making it necessary to attend the Indian High Commission in London. Now, e-visas that can be arranged online have been reintroduced. Time to plan a trip? Exodus (exodus.co.uk), Abercrombie & Kent (abercrombiekent.co.uk) and Cox & Kings (coxandkings.co.uk) all offer interesting new getaways. Also see indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa.
U.S. CUBA BAN
Not such brilliant news for America. If you have visited Cuba since March 1, 2011, you can no longer go to the U.S using an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (Esta). Instead of paying £17 for an Esta, such travellers must attend an interview and pay £129 for a visa. Find the latest information at gov.uk.
INTO THE EU
Many British travellers will need to pay £6 to enter Europe from next November
From next November most British travellers to Europe will be required to pay for a European Travel Information and Authorisation System e-visa. This ‘Etias’ pass will cost £6, be valid for three years and must be purchased by anyone between 18 and 70. Under-18s and over-70s will be eligible for free passes. Visitors can complete it online and will be encouraged to do so 72 hours before travel, although in most cases it will be issued immediately on payment. More information at etias.com.
The knock-on effect of Etias passes could be lengthy queues at border checks in Europe. A new Entry/Exit System (EES) is coming in to accompany the passes, designed to monitor movements of travellers from ‘third countries’, which Britain may be considered, having left the EU.
Visitors to Venice will have to pay an entry fee from later in the year — a measure designed to reduce overcrowding. The fee will vary from £2.60 to £8.60 per day. The pass will be available to book in advance online and each visitor will be provided with a QR code as proof. There will be a turnstile system or checks by wardens, or both, with fines of up to £257 for those without passes.
China’s ultra-strict handling of Covid has backfired with big outbreaks of the virus. Entry requirements are so tough — see the China travel section of fco.gov — that it is effectively impossible to visit.
PCR AXED FOR HK
Hong Kong has relaxed its PCR test requirements for those visiting from the UK
PCR tests are no longer required on arrival to Hong Kong. Visitors are required only to present negative results from tests conducted within 48 hours of flights.
SRI LANKA ALERT
This month Sri Lanka removed requirements to prove your Covid vaccine status or have a negative test, making it easier to visit. Travellers still need to apply for Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA), costing £16. See eta.gov.lk/slvisa. The country is also suffering from a shortage of medicines, fuel and food. The Foreign Office says, ‘it is more important than ever to get travel insurance’.
Don’t even think about going to Russia. The Foreign Office ‘strongly advises’ not to go due to the war in Ukraine. There are no direct flights from Britain, and your card likely won’t work: Visa and Mastercard have suspended operations there.
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