Entry and Exit Systems could be a source of concern.
What are the Entry and Exit Systems? The European Union Commission also implements a European Union Entry and Exit System as part of the ETIAS program (EES). The European Exit System (EES) is a surveillance system that records data and information on non-EU persons as they join and exit nations inside the European Union.
The EES was initially intended to be operational in May of 2022. However, this has been postponed until September due to logistical and operational difficulties.
Non-EU citizens are required to undergo biometric checks under the system. However, several large corporations have claimed that they don’t own the necessary equipment, do not have the space for the apparatus required, or do not have enough trained employees.
Aside from requiring competent operators, fingerprints and face recognition checks take up valuable space, which companies like Eurostar and Getlink (which administers the Eurotunnel) claim they do not have at this time.
Other authorities have also expressed worries about the safety of passengers who are required to exit their vehicles to undertake biometric checks.
While the primary objective of the Entry/Exit Program is to control the movements of “third country” nationals (citizens of countries other than the European Union), it is also intended to make travel to and from Europe efficient and easier for tourists to the continent.
Travelers and border officials may find the EES to be more of a nuisance than an aid, however, because there is no unified system in place (at this time).
The Current Travel Status in Europe
Entry and exit systems are changing in Europe. With the Covid-19 cases appearing to be declining, many European nations have returned for business, making summer vacations abroad a possibility once more. The situation is relatively straightforward for travelers looking for a short European vacation when it comes to travel. Many countries like Malta Schengen have allowed Covid Pass-free travel since August 2022.
For travelers from third-country countries, all that is necessary is a current and valid passport, as has been the norm for many years. Although it is not technically compulsory, it is a good idea to have any documents referring to the locations being visited and the dates of travel, such as bus, boat, airline tickets, and hotel reservations.
Such documentation may be sought at some border crossings, and having such on hand will make entering or departing a nation much simpler and faster.
Even though the Covid-19 restrictions and travel regulations are much less stringent now, they are still in effect throughout Europe, and prospective travelers should familiarize themselves with the rules and conditions in effect in their destination country, keeping in mind that the circumstances can change rapidly.
Some European nations demand a current negative Covid-19 test, while others may require you to spend a brief period of time in quarantine after you arrive in their country. Passengers returning from particular locations with high infection rates should also double-check any quarantine procedures upon arrival in their home country, which is often neglected.