UAE, UK and US travellers will soon need to apply to visit 30 European countries

American-style Etias system will be introduced next year

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From next year, people from the UAE, US, UK and Australia, among other countries, will require pre-approved online documentation to visit 30 countries in Europe.

Etias – the European Travel Information and Authorisation System – will compel 1.4 billion people from 58 countries that are currently visa-exempt to apply to visit.

The countries that will need advance authorisation to visit include Austria, Cyprus, Spain and Italy. The full list is below.

The Etias launch date in 2024 has not been announced.

The authorisation will be linked to a traveller’s passport and valid for up to three years or until the passport expires. Upon getting a new passport, travellers will require updated Etias travel authorisation.

"With a valid Etias travel authorisation, you can enter the territory of these European countries as often as you want for short-term stays – normally for up to 90 days in any 180-day period," explains the EU's official Etias website.

"However, it does not guarantee entry.

"When you arrive, a border guard will ask to see your passport and other documents and verify that you meet the entry conditions." says the system "resembles the US Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (Esta), which serves a similar purpose". SchengenVisaInfo is an information source, not affiliated with the EU.

The change will affect a number of countries listed in the top 10 on the Henley Passport Index, including the UK (passport holders can currently access 188 countries visa-free), New Zealand (187 countries), Canada (185 countries) and the US (184 countries).

How and when to apply for Etias

"Most applications are processed within minutes," reads the EU Etias website, however, on some occasions it will take up to four days to process.

The site states, "Please note that this period could be extended by up to 14 days if you are requested to provide additional information or documentation, or up to 30 days if you are invited to an interview."

The information states that travellers should "apply for an Etias travel authorisation well in advance of your planned journey".

Applications will be possible via the official Etias website or mobile application and will cost €7 ($7.80).

Who will have to apply for Etias travel authorisation?

Nationals from the following countries will need to apply for Etias travel authorisation.

  • Albania
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Brazil
  • Brunei
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Dominica
  • El Salvador
  • Georgia
  • Grenada
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Kiribati
  • Macao
  • Malaysia
  • Marshall Islands
  • Mauritius
  • Mexico
  • Micronesia
  • Moldova
  • Montenegro
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • North Macedonia
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Samoa
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Singapore
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan
  • Timor-Leste
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tuvalu
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States of America
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela

Full list of European countries requiring Etias travel authorisation

From 2024, the following 30 European counties (EU and otherwise) will require visa-exempt travellers from the list above to have Etias travel authorisation. EU country Ireland is exempt from the list.

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
Updated: July 27, 2023, 1:27 PM