The implementation of the ETIAS program is fast approaching and is something all travelers to Europe will want to take notice of. Here are some important ETIAS updates for those planning on taking a European trip after the system has launched in 2023.
When Will ETIAS Launch
After years of delays due to the global pandemic, ETIAS, the European Travel Information and Authorisation System, is set to be implemented in November 2023 by the European Commission. All travelers from visa-exempt countries traveling to the Schengen Area of the European Union will be required to apply for an ETIAS visa waiver if they want to be allowed entry at the border.
Schengen Candidate Countries
There are currently four European Union countries that are candidates for inclusion into the Schengen Area. They are:
Though these four countries are not part of the Schengen Area yet, all four will require an ETIAS visa waiver to gain entry upon the launch of the ETIAS visa waiver program.
Where to Find Official Government ETIAS Information
With the ETIAS program still over a year away from launching, there are still many updates to come from the European Union. Changes to the program could impact travelers coming to the Schengen Area within the next few years, so if you’re planning a European trip after November 2023, you’ll want to make sure you stay abreast of any updates to ETIAS that could affect you.
While we will continue to keep you informed of any ETIAS updates or changes to the program by the EU, you can find thorough and up-to-date information about ETIAS on the European Union’s official ETIAS page.
What Is ETIAS?
ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System) is a form of electronic travel authorization, also known as a visa waiver. Beginning November 2023, non-EU visitors traveling to the Schengen Area without a travel visa will need to obtain a visa waiver. After gaining access to the Schengen Area, visitors can move freely between the Schengen countries.
What Is ETIAS for?
Legal procedures for implementing the new travel authorization began in 2016. The goal of ETIAS is to improve border security in Europe by screening travelers who are not mandated to have a travel visa before they arrive in the Schengen Area. Through the process, it will determine whether a citizen can or cannot enter the Schengen Area visa-free.
To acquire an ETIAS travel authorization, visitors must complete an online application form and fulfill ETIAS requirements. Applicants will enter their personal details such as their name, date of birth and mailing address, information about their trip, and some security questions. Additionally, applicants must submit a valid passport, a credit or debit card to complete their application payment, and an email address.
Currently, there are more than 50 countries that will need to apply to visit the Schengen Area. Although, more countries could be added to the list in the future.
The ETIAS travel authorization allows for short-term stays of up to 90 days. Once approved, it can be used for 3 consecutive years or until the passport expires. Tourism and business travelers must have an approved ETIAS when visiting any part of the Schengen Area. Visitors traveling to the zone for work or study purposes will still need to apply for a travel visa.
Can I Study in Europe With an ETIAS?
No. ETIAS cannot be used for long-term studies in Europe. Students need to get a relevant visa or permit to attend university or another educational institution.
Do I Need an ETIAS to Attend a Conference in Europe?
Yes. If you are attending a convention or seminar in a Schengen nation, you will need to apply for an ETIAS.