Travel Ban: Did We Hear That Right?


The limits of freedom have been tested again with the European Parliament’s vote to end visa-free travel for Americans within the EU. At first glance it may seem like a completely outrageous decision, but it is important to look at the reasons that led to this. The decision to end visa-free travel for Americans within the European Union came after the United States failed to agree to visa-free travel for citiziens of five EU countries – Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Poland, and Romania. In contrast, US citizens can normally travel to all countries in the bloc without a visa.

Recent changes, including opening Europe’s borders to refugees and at the same time closing borders with outrageous reasons that mainly influence travellers, has led to many questions, such as: “What sort of standard does a person need to meet in order for him to travel in other countries?”

Are we not welcome to travel anywhere anymore?

The main question which is hanging in the air is actually how long are we going to be able to travel anywhere, without being stopped at a border crossing – mainly because our passports weren’t issued in the “right” country. It has become obvious that while we took “go-anywhere-at-anytime” travel for granted, the tables turned.  

We have to be aware that this decision will influence the travel market in important ways as the American people are known for generously spending their money on all the attractions the European countries have to offer, which will definitly result in a major drop in visitors. Tourism in Croatia, for example, represents a big chunk of Croation GDP, especially since the conclusion of the Croatian War of Independence, after which the tourism industry grew rapidly. It has even reached a record fourfold rise in tourist numbers, with more than 11 million tourists visiting Croatia each year.

You heard it right: Travel now!

It is certain that travelers are not in a favorable position anymore. Brexit may prove to be merely a forerunner, and similar actions may take place, and it would be interesting to guess what other policy changes we are going to witness in the near future. For that reason it is on us to travel as much as possible while we still can, because we most probably won’t always have the same opportunities we had before. Even though we might be called the Generation Why, we still have all the right reasons to pack our backpacks now and go into the world with our favorite sentence: “You Only Live Once!”

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