ETIAS Requirements

ETIAS Visa Waiver for Travelers from Bahama

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Bahama is preparing to become part of the EU’s new ETIAS (European Union Travel and Authorisation System) visa, allowing for travel in the whole of the Schengen area. The visa offers a complete package of travel in the Schengen area, for free movement in the Schengen area that must be pre-planned. ETIAS launches at the start of 2023, offering travellers 90 day stays in the Schengen area. Until then, Bahamians must sort out standard visas for travel to the EU.
ETIAS was a scheme created to deal with rising threats of foreign terrorism, aiming to provide background checks on all non-EU travellers. It does so through data-sharing arrangements with Interpol. When potential threats are flagged, the traveller will not be able to get their ETIAS visa waiver, thereby reducing the chance of travellers carrying out terrorism.

What Access To Europe Does The ETIAS Scheme Provide?

Bahamian citizens can use their ETIAS visa to travel for pleasure, business, and medical access most of Europe. Bahamians can travel on it to all of the Schengen states (Sweden, Netherlands, Finland, Greece, Latvia, Germany, France, Poland, Luxembourg, Denmark, Lithuania, Malta, Slovakia, Austria, Belgium, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Slovenia, Estonia, and the Czech Republic), with a single visa.
ETIAS grants Bahamians access to further nations in the EU. They can use it to access the defacto Schengen micro-states (the wealthy nations of Monaco and San Marino, and the Catholic state of Vatican City), and the non-EU Schengen members (Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland.) ETIAS will thus give Bahamians access to 29 of the 44 nations in the EU within three years of being awarded it. The visa allows for a single stay of up to 90 days, and if Bahamians want to travel to the EU again they will have to apply for a further ETIAS visa.

What Kinds Of Bahamians Need To Arrange an ETIAS Visa Waiver?

All Bahamians need an ETIAS visa if they want to go to the Schengen area at any time. This includes all ages, although people over-70 and minors will not need to pay application fees. Bahamians have to work out ETIAS visa waivers for their whole party, giving plenty of time for all of them to be approved before they set off. Otherwise, they risk their party being split upon arrival to the Schengen area.

How Can Bahamians Can Apply For An ETIAS?

Getting hold of an ETIAS visa is a simple process for Bahamians. It won’t take them long to find the required documentation and to complete the online forms. Only a passport, an address, and a credit or debit card are required.
The online form is simple to fill out as well. It is formed of a majority basic inquiries, like the name, address, birthdate and birthplace, travel itinerary, and parents’ basic information of the applicant. Some of the questions are a little wider than the kind of information Bahamians need to give every day, like inquiries on terrorism connections, travel to conflict areas, connections to human trafficking, illegal drug use, past and current employment, and any previous visits to Europe.
The current consensus is that ETIAS applications will see an acceptance rate of 95%, giving many Bahamians the right to travel to the Schengen area. The process is also expected to be rapid. Many Bahamians will have their applications manually processed, but it is still expected to take just one working day in most cases. If additional documentation is required for minor clarification, up to three working days may be required.

What Will Cause The EU To Reject Bahamians ETIAS Visa Applications

Only 5% of Bahamians are likely to receive a rejection for their application, and three main reasons will explain this. The reasons for rejection are first, the processing team discovering that falsified information is in the application, Interpol investigations finding criminal or terrorist activities or links by the applicant, and finally concerns about what the applicant is planning on doing during their stay.
Bahamians may still be able to visit the Schengen area if their application is refused. Generally, simply providing additional documentation as requested, such as a criminal record, within 96 hours will lead to a rethink of an application. Four weeks are given for the receiving nation to come to a decision.

What Places In Europe Are Not Included In The ETIAS Scheme?

ETIAS visa waivers will not apply for Bahamians who wish to visit areas of Europe outside of the Schengen area. There are plenty of nations like this in Europe, and Bahamians will need to be careful that they are not using their ETIAS visa waiver to travel to nations that are not part of the scheme. This includes EU nations like Ireland, Cyprus, Croatia, Romania, and Bulgaria, as well as non-EU nations in Europe who are not part of the Schengen agreement.
Bahamians must find out a way to travel to these nations legally, and this will usually involve arranging a visa from their destination nation independently of the EU.

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