The ease of free travel around Europe is but a memory in a post-brexit UK, despite pandemic restrictions being all but gone. In 2023, entry into the EU, along with countries such as the US, will be different from what we are used to, and one country is even starting the year with a new currency.
As a member of the European Union, British citizens could travel, work, and live in any of the union’s 27 (28 including UK) countries without a need for a visa. But since Brexit came into effect, many countries require more thorough border control to enter, including a stamp in your passport.
While the UK says its farewell to the bloc, other countries make their place in the union more known. As of January 1, 2023, Croatia is scrapping its old currency Cuna in favour of the Euro. Only a decade after joining the Union, the former Yugoslavian country is now a member of Schengen as well as part of the single currency union.
The European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS), requiring British citizens travelling to the EU to fill out an online form and pay a small fee of around £6, was delayed from November 2022, and will instead come into effect this year. Once granted, the authorisation will be eligible for three years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.
The application needs to be filed by everyone between the age of 18 and 70 at least 96 hours before travelling into the bloc. And while the authorisation, only taking minutes for most people and costing less than a tenner, might seem like nothing, it’s still one more thing to remember before travelling in a post-brexit world.
The bloc is also making changes to the Entry and Exit System (EES), in which biometric data, name and entry and exit date and place, will be logged on a digital system. The new system might lead to longer queues at the UK border once in effect.
Travelling to the US from the UK - new visa rules
Travellers to the United States might also face a longer and more tedious process than before. While travelling from the UK to the US has always required a ESTA visa waiver, a new law requires anyone who has visited Cuba since March 2011 to go through a complicated and lengthy process before being allowed into the country.
If you have visited the Caribbean island nation in the last decade, you are required to apply for a tourist visa costing up to £143 before being allowed to enter the States. You will also be required to be interviewed in London - a major inconvenience for anyone not living in the capital.