Currently United States citizens visiting the European Union for under 90 days do not need a visa – this will change from 2021, all will need to gain a new type of visa. We could say this is all the Europeans being mean to Yanks but it’s not actually that at all. It’s that Uncle Sam has been mean to some Europeans and as a result Europe is to place these restrictions upon all Americans.
The point being that visa requirements are always reciprocal. Governments might do – often do – stupid things but that doesn’t mean that the entire system is stupid. So, the general rule is, if you do this to our people then we’ll do this same thing to your people. This works with trade tariffs, roughly enough. If you don’t charge a tariff on our exports then we’ll not charge one on what we import from you. At a rather larger scale countries tend not to declare war on each other and that all changes rapidly if one declares war on the other – they’ll reciprocate.
The same is true of visa requirements and even the cost of them. You do this to ours then we’ll do that to your.
US citizens travelling to Europe will need to obtain a visa from 2021, the European Union (EU) has said. The new European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) visa will be required for all US citizens who want to enter any of the 26 Schengen-zone countries.
This is not just an outbreak of Orange Man Bad and thus all Americans must be punished.
The United States has been in a dispute with the EU’s European Parliament and European Commission over visas for Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland, Romania and Cyprus. Travelers in those five countries are the only EU nations that the US requires to apply for a visa.
In 2016, the European Commission first released a report calling for the U.S. to grant the same visa-free status to those five countries as the other 23 EU nations in exchange for U.S. citizens maintaining the same visa-free status in the Schengen Area. EU rules require equal treatment for all member states.
That’s what it is about. The US distinguishes between some EU countries and others. And by requiring visitors from some to gain visas therefore the EU is demanding that all Americans do. The details:
US citizens traveling to Europe will shortly need to apply for an ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System) visa which is the new travel visa to visit Europe that will come into effect from 2021. Similar to other countries and regions in the world Europe has recently decided to improve their security level to avoid any further problems with illegal migration and terrorism. This means that from 2021, all Americans traveling to a European Schengen-zone country will be in need of an ETIAS.
As to the why, clearly explained here:
The US requires visas for some EU citizens, so now all US citizens visiting the EU will need visas, too
If the US decided to allow EU citizens from those five countries to visit the US without a visa then US citizens wouldn’t need a visa to visit Europe. It’s all, always, reciprocal, d’ye see?