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DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS: America’s third world travel status

The real threat to our democracy lies in misinformation

As many people are aware, I have been a travel writer for many years.

In fact, it has been my lifeblood for 25-plus years to be exact.

After the pandemic, it became harder to travel abroad.

I think back to last year when I was in India and every time before I boarded an airplane (four times inside the country to be exact), I had to get a PCR test – and it had to be negative. 

And, I had to endure dirty conditions and hospitals, in many cases where I was worried about getting a lot more than Covid while being tested.

Indeed, one of the luxuries of being an American citizen has been not having to present a Visa when traveling around the world. 

Of course, in some African countries and a few others on the list Americans are required to get a Visa upon arrival. 

And in India, there are always Visa issues.

But overall, as an American it has been very easy to travel with no headache for many years.

Enter the world of the pandemic, and the insistent need to figure out how to lock people down and know our every move.

It has been talked about for the last six months that beginning in 2024 the European Union decided Americans now have to have a Visa to travel there. 

I actually read an article about this topic t over the weekend. 

However, doing my research this morning: www.boundless.com/blog/u-s-citizens-visa-travel-to-europe/#:~:text=Starting%20in%202025%2C%20U.S.%20passport,effect%20in%202024%2C%20but%20E.U it was reported the 2024 Visa requirement for Americans has been moved to 2025. 

Either way, the ease of entering Europe whether it is 2024 or 2025 just became more of a headache like many things are these days post-pandemic. 

And so, welcome to the third world country status our government has insisted on putting us on the trajectory for – and that includes both sides of the aisle. 

Let’s say this website is correct and the Visa requirement does not begin until 2025.

It is called the European Travel Information and Authorization System, and you will need it before your visit.

The tagline for this new system is, “It will enhance security and facilitate smoother entry for travelers.”

I hate to tell the folks in charge, but European entry has always been smooth, and anytime you add a new layer of bureaucracy you can count on it not being smooth anymore. 

I lived in Paris, and I remember well those layers after layers of paperwork. 

I used to laugh at my French friend I lived with saying “It could never happen in America.” 

Well, it has now happened in America.

Supposedly this ETIAS has been in the works since 9/11. Talk about bureaucracy – this implementation sure took a long time. 

And in this world of open borders in America here is what one report said about this ETIAS, “The European Commission says ETIAS may have the added impact of cutting down on “irregular migration” (i.e., illegal immigration), but one thing the form is not aimed to do is deter tourism in general.”

Seems we in America sure do know a lot about “irregular migration” or as defined illegal immigration over here in America these days don’t we?

I know, some will say I am a conspiracy theorist, and I will just laugh because I am not. I am able to see patterns, and this is just one more of those patterns.

And after all, maybe it is time American’s have to meet the requirements all the other countries have to, I mean fair is fair, right? 

But you must ask why this is being implemented and look for the real reasons behind it and then attempt to form an educated opinion. 

Not an opinion based on emotions like the senseless comments these days (mostly on social media) when someone is offended by stated facts. 

As everyone who reads my column is aware I am not fan of Klaus Schwab and The World Economic Forum, not so much because I care if people eat bugs, get rid of their cars, decide to get locked into their 15-minute cities or anything else that a free-thinking person wants to do. 

What I detest about this group is they demand we do what they have decided the right thing to do in their mind is, no longer allowing humans to live free.

I decided to look at the official take on tourism from a WEF perspective and sure enough an article written last week was posted at the WEF site titled, “What is over tourism and how can we overcome it?” 

Points were made in that article, “While the pandemic was expected to usher in a new normal where responsible and sustainable travel would emerge, this shift was evidently short-lived, as demand surged in 2022 and 2023 after travel restrictions eased.”

What is a new normal exactly? 

Schwab and his band of merry globalist don’t like it when humans don’t follow their line of thinking and their agenda.

The article also demanded “Governments at all levels must be decisive and firm about policy responses that control the nature of tourist demand and not merely give in to profits that flow from tourist expenditure and investment.”

I agree over tourism is an issue in many places because people often seem to be clueless about how to respect the world’s beautiful natural resources, but I promise WEF has an agenda. 

One thing is certain no matter the future of travel, these little Visas will stop a number of people from traveling because people are lazy.

And it is one more piece of red tape the average traveler will choose not to do. 

I know this because of how many times I have ask people to travel with me to countries that require Visas and believe it or not more than you would expect decided not to take the trip “because it is just too much of a headache to get a Visa.”

Maybe less travel is an important step to sustainability. We will see.

I will end my column this week with an interesting view from www.link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-031-25752-0_31 – life about travel by the year 2030. 

It read, “Towards 2030, the metaverse will enable visitors to mentally teleport themselves to destinations, regardless of time, financial resources, and physical abilities. 

“Individuals will seamlessly move between integrated digital and physical realities, where the engagement with travel becomes a part of daily life. 

“The study is novel and original in that it empirically explores the emerging concept of never-ending tourism and contributes to the wider metaverse discourse in the tourism context. 

“Several practical suggestions and future research directions are given to unlock the potential of never-ending tourism in relation to integrated experience design, new business models and long-term customer engagement.”

I will just leave the world of travel right there – bon voyage!

 

Rita Cook is a freelance writer for The Ellis County Press. She can be reached at rcook13@earthlink.net.

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