The European Travel Information and Authorization System or ETIAS is a new visa waiver program that is meant to strengthen the borders of the Schengen Zone. Tourists will need an ETIAS visa waiver for Greece as an added security measure. It is important to know that this is the same for all EU countries found within the Schengen Area, not just for Greece.
Not to be confused with a standard travel visa, the ETIAS screens all applicants prior to their visit to Greece. Once visitors are approved they are able to move freely throughout Greece and the Schengen Zone for up to 90 days.
This means many of the non-EU citizens that are currently allowed to visit Europe visa-free will need approval before entering any Schengen country, including Greece.
Greece, the EU, and the Schengen Area
Greece is located in Southeastern Europe and makes up part of the Balkan countries. The official language is Greek and the euro is used as currency. The country is made up of many islands along the Aegean and Ionian Seas.
Greece became a member of the European Union in 1981 and joined the Schengen Area in 2000. The Schengen Area is made up of 26 countries. The purpose of this area is to function as one jurisdiction for international travel.
Once the area is entered, a visitor can travel around without hard borders or additional passport controls. As a part of the Schengen Zone, tourists who have a Greek ETIAS can travel around Greece and to any of the other Schengen countries.
Who Needs ETIAS to Travel to Greece?
There are over 60 countries that are required to apply for an ETIAS if they wish to travel throughout Europe. Many of these citizens currently do not need any visa or waiver to enter the EU. However, beginning in 2021, this will change.
Once the system is in place, these citizens of non-EU countries will have to apply for ETIAS Greece before entering Greece. Once applicants are screened and approved, they are able to travel within Greece and the Schengen Zone for up to 90 days.
The ETIAS allows people to visit the countries found within the Schengen Zone for tourist, business, medical, and transit purposes.
How Can I Apply for a Greek ETIAS?
The ETIAS application is a simple process that is accessible from home. Therefore, there is no time wasted making appointments or waiting in queues at an embassy or consulate.
To apply for a Greek ETIAS the applicant only needs about 10 minutes and Wi-Fi access. To complete the application the following is needed:
- Biometric information
- First name
- Surname at birth
- Date of birth
- Place of birth
- Current address
- Email address and phone number
- The name of the first EU country that will be visited
- A credit or debit card for the application fee
Passport and Document Requirements for Greek ETIAS
The ETIAS requirements for Greece are standard and have to be met before beginning an application. They are as follows:
- A valid passport
- Issue and expiry dates
- Validity of at least three months from arrival date
- Education and work experience
- Brief medical history
- Previous visits to war zones (if any)
- Prior countries one was deported or rejected from (if any)
- Criminal record (if applicable)
Those with family members who are EU citizens will have to submit proof of relationship, residence card and/or other background details. A legal guardian must complete an application for any minors.
Travel Information about Greece
Often credited as the birthplace of Western civilization, Greece tops many tourists must-see lists and it is not hard to see why. The country is rich in history, culture, and beaches.
Visitors are sure to delight in wandering the ancient ruins and sights in Athens, the capital city. Most of the well-known landmarks date back as far as the 5th century. Topping the list are the Acropolis citadel and Parthenon. The UNESCO protected monastery, Meteora, is another must-see attraction as it is situated on the top of hill-like rock formation.
Santorini is another popular tourist destination. Between the beautiful black sand beaches to the whitewashed houses, it is easy to see why. The jagged landscape is sure to provide amazing views from all over the city.
Mykonos is another widely known beach destination but this one is for the partiers. Located on an island in the Aegean Sea, the club scene is like no other. There is no shortage of dance floor and famous DJs filling them during the wild summer months.