Oct 27 2005
SOME ITALIANS AND FRENCH CITIZENS WILL NOW NEED A VISA TO VISIT THE U.S.
It appears that citizens of Austria, France and Italy may lose the right to travel in the U.S. without having to obtain a visa in advance of their visit. These countries all most likely will not reach the October 26 th deadline to include a digital photograph on all newly issued passports. The new American passport rule requires that all countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program (which allows their citizens to visit the U.S. without having to obtain a visa in advance) administer to their citizens machine-readable passports with digital photographs. All other 27 participating Visa Waiver Program members have reached this requirement; their citizens will continue to only need a machine-readable passport to visit the U.S.
This lack of reaching the deadline, however, will not have major effect on travel to the U.S. The deadline will only affect passports issued on or after October 26. Further, only parts of France and Italy will be affected; the majority of areas in the two nations are currently able to produce the required passport. In addition, it seems that Austria will soon have a solution for their situation.