In November 2016, the European Travel Information and Authorisation System, often known as ETIAS for Europe, was presented as an official proposal.
The European visa waiver is being created to improve immigration and border control in the EU in order to avoid future health and security problems. The European Commission formally introduced ETIAS Europe in 2016 for initial implementation in November 2023.
WHAT DOES ETIAS MEAN IN AND OUTSIDE OF EUROPE?
The ETIAS Europe visa waiver is expected to go into effect in November 2023, affecting various categories of individuals in different ways.
- Citizens of the Schengen zone countries and the EU will be affected by ETIAS as it is a new initiative to improve safety and security within the bloc. The aim is to reduce immigration problems, speed up border control procedures and decrease health and terrorist threats within the ETIAS countries in Europe.
ETIAS FOR NON-EUROPEANS:
- People from all over the world, as citizens of the countries who currently travel to Europe visa-free such as America, Canada, Brazil, Japan etc., will need to apply online for a travel authorization for Europe before departure which will be requested upon entry through any land, sea or airport in the EU Schengen Area. The ETIAS eligible countries refer to all those countries whose citizens are entitled to visit Europe with a visa waiver.
- The only group of people that will not be directly influenced by ETIAS in any way are those citizens from countries who currently and will continue to need to apply for a Schengen visa to visit Europe. These are the citizens of countries who are on the list of countries that require a traditional embassy or consulate visa to visit the EU.
ETIAS VISA WAIVER FOR EUROPE APPLICATION
The ETIAS application will be a short online form that will ask passengers for basic information that will decide whether or not the applicant is qualified for an ETIAS for Europe.
The European Commission has assured travellers that the ETIAS application form will be simple to use and that it will be processed quickly, with applicants being screened against various security databases such as Interpol and the ETIAS Watchlist and receiving their approved ETIAS visa waiver via email within minutes.
The EU has yet to formalise the process, but tests are underway, and the ETIAS programme will soon be a reality for eligible persons travelling to Europe.