The European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) is a new travel authorization measure from the European Union (EU). The system is meant for citizens of those countries that do not need a visa for the Schengen Zone.
But exactly when is ETIAS starting, what are its new requirements, and what type of costs does it incur on eligible individuals? To help you find answers to these questions, here is the latest development on ETIAS status.
According to the latest information from the European Union, ETIAS is expected to start in 2024. It appears that the system will have a proper rollout by the revised deadline. Once started, ETIAS will follow the originally outlined rules of becoming mandatory for citizens of over 60 countries that currently do not need a visa to visit the Schengen area. In order to learn more about information such as updated requirements and costs, you can go through the following details.
The overall process to complete your ETIAS registration is quite straightforward. After the system is launched, it will allow visa-exempt travelers to fill out their applications online through a website or a mobile app. If you provide the required information and have no missing documents, you may receive authorization right away.
There might be instances where your ETIAS authorization may require more time. Should that be the case, expect a response in about four days. Be aware, though, that this timeline might stretch to 14 days if they ask for more information or documentation from you. In the event you’re called for an interview, the decision could be delayed by as much as 30 days. However, these instances may remain limited in order to facilitate a majority of travelers with on-the-spot ETIAS authorization.
Travelers from certain countries like the United States and the United Kingdom will need to get the ETIAS visa waiver before they can enter the European Union’s Schengen Zone.
Some other countries include:
Most of these travelers did not require any authorization to travel to Europe previously. However, this is not a visa! It is a low-cost way for the EU to keep both their citizens and travelers safer by disallowing visits by people who might be dangerous or involved in terrorist activities.
The ETIAS system is much better than having to get a visa! Benefits include:
The ETIAS visa waiver works for both business travel and tourism. Visitors traveling for other purposes will need to obtain a different type of travel permission. There are many reasons why Europe has chosen to implement the ETIAS system, including:
Increased safety for both citizens and travelers based on improved immigration control. Encouraging more tourists to come to Europe because of increased safety. The entire process is electronic, so travelers do not have to carry paper documents. For those who do need a visa, the lines at the airport will be shorter.
European Union countries included in the ETIAS system include: Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, Greece, Czech Republic, Malta.
The non-European Union countries that will require an ETIAS visa waiver are: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.
The micro countries that will be de facto parts of the ETIAS system are: Monaco, San Marino, and Vatican City.
This area is called the Schengen Zone. All travel to these countries will require a visa waiver or a visa. However, travel between these countries will not require any sort of documentation.
The ETIAS application is a straightforward process. Travelers should have the following documents to apply for an ETIAS visa waiver:
They should also double-check to make sure that they come from a country that is eligible for the ETIAS visa waiver. After that, they only need internet access and a small chunk of time, during which they can fill out the application.
Once they are ready to go, applicants can fill out the ETIAS visa waiver application. The process is easy, and there are instructions for every step of the application.
They will need to make sure that they:
The application will ask for:
Once the application is completed, travelers can pay online, then submit the application. Their data will be screened against several databases. When the visa waiver is approved, they will receive an email.
While they do not have to carry proof of their ETIAS visa waiver acceptance, they may want to print this email to carry with them just in case.
Most travelers will hear back about their ETIAS status almost immediately. Some cases will take a few days to process, while others may take up to 30 days.
The application is online. Once approved, ETIAS authorization is valid for three years or until the travel document used to apply for it expires, whichever comes first. ETIAS holders can enter as many times as they want to within that three-year period, though they cannot stay for longer than 90 days in a 180-day period.
The ETIAS will be in the EU Immigration system electronically so travelers can simply scan their passports to enter the area. They will need to enter via the country they listed on their ETIAS application before they can travel throughout the area.
Visitors will not need to carry any kind of document print-out to show proof of the ETIAS approval or payment. This will make travel around Europe hassle-free and more convenient.
With the advent of the ETIAS, travel to and around Europe will still be simple and straightforward for travelers who do not need to obtain a visa. It will foster safety and security in the region.
The ETIAS is not a visa but, instead, is a visa waiver. It allows Europe to screen travelers before they arrive so they can deny entry to people who are deemed security risks. It also allows them to know which foreigners are in the area in case there is a catastrophe, and they need to know who could have been affected. The ETIAS visa waiver is designed to keep both travelers and citizens safe. The European government is hoping to reduce the number of terrorist attacks and the amount of political unrest so that people can feel more comfortable traveling there.
The ETIAS is a project initiated by the European Union, though there are a few countries in the Schengen Zone that will require it but that are not part of the EU. These are Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway, and Sweden. Similarly, a few EU countries do not yet require the ETIAS, including the Republic of Ireland, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Cyprus.
The ETIAS visa waiver system is modeled after other systems currently in place in both Australia and the United States. The EU designed it to screen out travelers who are potentially dangerous or who may be entering the area under false pretenses. By not allowing them to enter, the government hopes to curb terrorism, political unrest, and other potential threats to people and property. While applying for a visa waiver may feel like an unnecessary step, the government of the EU has deemed it the best way to protect its borders.
The Schengen Zone is an area in Europe within which borderless travel is allowed. These countries are governed separately but permit people to move between them without requiring passport checks or separate visas. This lowers border control costs and makes it easier for people to do business and see the sights.
The ETIAS visa waiver will protect this entire area. Once inside the zone, travelers will be able to move about freely without having to worry about getting permission to visit each country separately. They will be able to stay for up to 90 days at a time, and their visa waiver will be valid for up to three years or until their current passport expires.
The European Union is gearing up for the implementation of another border management measure that will impact journeys to Europe, namely, the Entry/Exit Systems (EES). ETIAS and EES represent two distinct systems brought forth to bolster the security of EU member nations. Here are their differences:
ETIAS caters to visitors from visa-exempt countries. These individuals must procure this electronic travel authorization prior to embarking on their journey. It’s important to note that ETIAS isn’t a visa, and it doesn’t alter the status of visa-exempt visitors. Once enacted, EES will be compulsory for both visa-exempt and visa-requisite travelers entering EU member states for brief visits. Global travelers aren’t required to register/apply for an EES before their journey since the EES registration will occur at the external boundaries of the Schengen nations. This registration happens each time a visitor crosses the external border of any of these states, including Bulgaria and Romania.
The purpose of EES is to supersede the passport stamping process conducted by immigration officials at the borders. An ETIAS mandates that overseas travelers disclose their personal details and previous travels to areas of war or conflict. Nevertheless, they aren’t obliged to provide biometric data like fingerprints. Conversely, EES will gather travelers’ biometric information, encompassing facial images and fingerprints. Additionally, it will record the traveler’s date and place of entry/exit from EU member states.
ETIAS and EES won’t be introduced together. EES will be operational initially, with ETIAS following at a later date. The precise dates are anticipated to be announced by the EU.