After its introduction in mid-2025, nationals of more than 50 visa-exempt countries will be eligible to get an ETIAS travel authorization. The ETIAS will allow you to enter the Schengen Area. We will look at what it is, what the Schengen Area means, who needs ETIAS, and other details that will make applying a little easier.
ETIAS is an acronym for European Travel Information and Authorization System. It's a type of electronic travel authorization that's also referred to as a visa waiver.
Non-EU individuals traveling to the Schengen Area (a group of European countries which don’t have passport checks at their shared borders) without a visa will need to apply for an ETIAS travel authorization before their journey starting in 2025.
The EU has agreed to deploy ETIAS to strengthen the safety of all individuals within its borders in view of the recently elevated security risk to both EU nationals and those traveling to the Schengen Area. In 2016, the EU started the legislative process for implementing ETIAS, with implementation coming next year.
Before traveling to the Schengen Area, citizens of all visa-exempt nations outside the European Union will be required to submit an ETIAS application. An ETIAS is an option that allows European countries to enter the Schengen Area.
All EU nations, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland, are included in the ETIAS. Monaco, San Marino, and Vatican City are three of the European microstates listed. ETIAS will also be eligible for travel to nations applying to join the Schengen, including Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, and Romania, all of whom are members of the European Union.
Here's the list os countries that will require an ETIAS Visa Waver in order to enter the European Union:
|Bosnia and Herzegovina
|Saint Kitts and Nevis
|Trinidad and Tobago
|United Arab Emirates
|United States of America
ETIAS was supposed to be operational by the end of 2021 and wholly deployed by 2022, according to the original timeline. However, the implementation of ETIAS has now been announced for mid-2025.
The introduction of this travel authorization will start with a six-month transitional period, during which travelers are advised to have an ETIAS authorization but can still enter without it if they meet other entry criteria. After this period, a grace period of at least six months will require the authorization for entry into the 30 European countries, with a one-time exception for first-time visitors since the transitional period.
A simple online approach will be used to receive the ETIAS application form, which will be finished swiftly. An authorization will be granted in the great majority of circumstances in a couple of minutes. Each applicant's online registration and application procedure is estimated to take about 10 minutes.
According to the experience of other nations with similar travel authorization systems, 95% of applications will be accepted in minutes.
Fingerprints and biometric data will not be collected from applicants, but they will need to provide:
The applicants may also be asked about things that include:
You may also want to read our article on how to obtain a Criminal Record Check in the U.S.
Applicants can have their applications to enter the Schengen Area denied if they lie during the application.
Though the cost could change, at the time of writing, ETIAS will cost about 7 euros for people aged 18 to 70. No fee will be charged for people over 70 or under 18.
The ETIAS visa waiver has a 3-year validity period with multiple entries allowed as necessary for those granted the waiver. Within each 180-day period, the total stay allowed in a Schengen nation with each ETIAS entrance is 90 days.
ETIAS allows for brief stays in Schengen nations for vacation, business, medical treatment, or transit. American citizens must apply for a visa from an embassy or consulate to remain for extended periods or other purposes.
Please note that the passport and the ETIAS visa exemption are linked. This means that your passport must be valid in order to use ETIAS. If it expires, but the ETIAS is still valid, you should consider renewing your passport and applying for a new visa exemption.