European Authorities have announced that from the end of 2022 onwards, travellers from 60 countries will need to obtain an Electronic Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) visa waiver in order to travel to Europe. This visa waiver will be necessary for Ukrainians to visit the Schengen area and other countries in and around Europe.
ETIAS has been implemented as a measure to screen individuals before they arrive in Europe in order to strengthen the European border. ETIAS is not a visa. Rather it is a new method of pre-checking passengers planning to enter the Schengen Area’s borders.
It is valid for travel to all 26 countries in the Schengen Area plus some non-EU member states such as Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. Applying is set to be a straightforward procedure which will only take a few minutes to complete.
Is the ETIAS visa waiver necessary for Ukrainian citizens?
Ukrainian citizens are eligible to travel to Europe on an ETIAS visa waiver. It also offers a convenient way for people to travel to Europe rather than the traditional method in which people had to visit a local embassy or consulate in order to obtain a visa in order to do so.
With the ETIAS program, travellers need not leave the comfort of their home or office in order to apply for a visa waiver. Since the entire process takes place online, tourists can simply fill out an online application, pay the processing fee and receive their visa waiver within a matter of minutes.
Basic requirements to apply for the ETIAS visa waiver
Ukrainian travellers interested in applying for an ETIAS visa waiver must fulfil some basic requirements. These conditions include having a valid Ukrainian passport. Additionally, visitors will need to have a valid email address where the ETIAS visa waiver will be sent and a valid debit/credit card that can be used to pay the processing fee for the online application.
Ukrainians must renew their passport if they do not meet the required passport validity needed to apply for the ETIAS visa waiver. Furthermore, if their passport expires whilst their ETIAS remains valid, they will need to register for a new visa waiver using their new travel document.
ETIAS visa waiver application process for Ukrainians
To begin applying for the ETIAS visa waiver, Ukrainian citizens will need to fill out an online application with details such as:
- Their name
- Date of birth
- Country of citizenship
- Passport Number, date of issuance, date of expiration
- Permanent address
- Phone number
- Email address
- Travel details including the expected port of entry into Europe and a rough outline of their travel plans
It should be noted that travellers will need to answer some pertinent questions regarding their health and security. Ukrainian applicants should also be prepared to provide any additional supporting information that may be asked of them as part of the application process.
Tourists are advised to answer these questions as truthfully as possible as all the information provided on the ETIAS visa waiver application form is checked against International Security Databases such as Interpol and Europol.
Any incorrect information, false or misleading information will create grounds for European authorities to delay the granting of the visa waiver or deny it altogether. Travellers will receive an email explaining why their ETIAS visa waiver was rejected and how to appeal the decision. The appeal will have to be made to the initial country the visitor wanted to enter Europe from and the matter will be decided according to the individual laws of that country.
Travellers should know that they will have an opportunity to review the information they have entered on the ETIAS visa waiver application before submitting it. They will also be required to pay a processing fee in order to complete the application process. Visitors can pay this fee as part of the application process using a valid debit/credit card.
Travelling to Europe from Ukraine on ETIAS visa waiver
Once the traveller has submitted the ETIAS visa waiver application, they can expect to either receive their visa waiver within a matter of minutes or hear back on the status of their application. If the ETIAS visa waiver has been received via email, visitors will need to print out a copy of it to take with them to the European port of entry when they travel. It will have to be presented along with other travel documents to European border officials in order to be granted entry into the country.
The ETIAS visa waiver allows Ukrainian travellers a maximum stay of 90 days within a 180-day period with multiple entries into Europe. Ukrainians who leave before the 90-day period is up can visit Europe again within the same 180-day period without requiring a new ETIAS visa waiver.