What means ETIAS?
ETIAS stands for European Travel Information and Authorization System and has
been in discussion for some time before the European Commission announced it
would be launched. The initial announcement of ETIAS was back in 2016 and
legislation was implemented in September 2018. It is now expected for ETIAS to
come into effect in 2021 and to be mandatory from 2022.
The ETIAS is a visa waiver agreement to enable eligible travellers to enter
without the requirement of a visa. Instead, travellers
are able to visit ETIAS countries by applying for an ETIAS online and
getting screened before a decision is made by authorities as to whether
to approve the ETIAS.
The purpose of the ETIAS is to enable improved border security as well as
establishing an improved way of managing borders. Travellers entering the
Schengen Zone will be required to have either an ETIAS or a Schengen Visa,
depending on which country they are citizens of and the purpose of their travel.
It is also being introduced with the intention of supporting immigration
policies that are shared across the Schengen countries.
is a quick and easy way of obtaining travel authorization to enter
countries in the Schengen Zone and it is for people that are visiting on short
term stays of less than 90 days. It will be available for both tourism and
business purposes, as long as the trip does not extend past the 90-day limit.
The ETIAS will be connected to the passport that it was issued in relation to
and if the passport expires, the ETIAS will no longer be valid. A new ETIAS may
then be applied to enable travel authorization for future trips to countries
within the Schengen Zone.
It is expected that the ETIAS application will be very fast, with most
applications being processed within 72 hours or even less than that.
Travellers will therefore be advised to apply for their ETIAS at least
72 hours before they are due to travel, so to avoid any delays with the
In order to apply for ETIAS, the applicant must have a valid biometric passport
and they must also have an electronic payment card to pay the application fee with.
They will also need to have a valid email address, which the application
correspondence will be sent to.
ETIAS is not designed for people wishing to study or remain in Schengen for longer
than 90 days, a relevant visa would be required for these types of purposes.