Basic ETIAS visa waiver requirements
There will be some basic ETIAS requirements that travellers will need to meet to obtain an ETIAS visa waiver. Each applicant will need to be a citizen from one of the ETIAS eligible countries, complete the online application without inaccuracies or mistakes, and possess the following:
- A valid passport with at least three months remaining from the date of arrival.
- A debit or credit card to pay the ETIAS application fee.
- An up-to-date email address to receive the ETIAS visa waiver.
Visitors from ETIAS eligible countries must learn that an ETIAS is not a visa, but a visa waiver. This is a key distinction because it means that as of late 2022, once ETIAS is launched, visa-exempt countries will continue to have this condition.
Personal information required for ETIAS
Travellers will need to enter a range of personal information to complete the ETIAS application form. The required information will include:
- Personal information: e.g. full name, date of birth, place of birth, and gender.
- Contact details: e.g. address, email address, and phone number.
- Passport details: e.g. passport number, issue and expiry dates, and nationality.
- Travel plans: including the member state of the intended first entry.
There will also be some security-related questions regarding criminal activity and other sensitive background information, as well as questions regarding the health of applicants.
ETIAS eligible countries
There are currently more than 60 countries which will be eligible to apply for ETIAS. The list of countries may continue to grow in the future.
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- Hong Kong
- Marshall Islands
- New Zealand
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent
- Solomon Islands
- South Korea
- Timor Leste
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- United States of America
ETIAS or Schengen visa?
At the moment, nationalities who cannot enter the Schengen Area visa-free need to apply for a Schengen visa. These visas can be obtained in embassies and consulates of any Schengen member state.
Schengen visas are designed for short stays and allow visitors to spend up to 90 days (in any 180-day period) in the Schengen Area. As there are no hard borders between the 26 Schengen members, visitors can move freely between them.
As a general rule, travellers must apply for a visa at a consulate where they legally reside and meet the Schengen visa requirements. As part of the application, it is necessary to state which country or countries they intend to visit and for how long. Applications cannot be submitted more than three months before a trip to the Schengen Area.
Once ETIAS has been implemented, the current visa-exempt country nationals will need to obtain this visa waiver to enter the EU. In other words, all those visitors who can now stay up to 90 days in any 180-day period in European Union countries (for tourism, business or transit) will be obliged to apply for ETIAS, which is not a visa but a visa waiver, as of late 2022.