The United Kingdom plans to also cover switchers from a new tax in the future. This primarily affects people who would not need a visa to enter the UK. However, they should have to apply for an “Electronic Travel Authorization”, which costs ten pounds sterling, up to three days in advance.
In addition to additional revenue, the United Kingdom has a very specific idea behind the project: They want to know exactly who is traveling through the country or changing trains at Heathrow and/or other airports. To do this, you want a paid online form to be filled out in good time before departure. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic are extremely critical of the project.
BA boss Sean Doyle fears that business travelers in particular might find it too tedious to fill out a paid online form, which is not necessary when changing planes at other airports, such as Paris-Charles de Gaulle or Frankfurt am Main. In addition, it is stated that these would only be transfers who would actually only be in transit. Entry into the UK will only take place in the event of flight irregularities and there are local laws and international agreements for such cases.
The UK government's plan does not only apply to those switching. People who want to enter the UK for a trip to London, for example, will also be asked to pay in the future. The prerequisite for mandatory participation in the new ETA program is that you do not need a visa to enter the country.
It is planned that the airlines will be required by regulation to check at the latest upon boarding whether the ETA registration is present and paid for. In this regard, British Airways warns of additional effort and problems, because it is to be expected, especially in the early days, that passengers would not do this at all due to a lack of knowledge or that they are of the opinion that they are exempt from transferring because they are not formally traveling to the United Kingdom would enter.