Travel and Leisure

Basic Guidelines to Know About ETIAS Visa for Europe Travel

The EU’s new ETIAS visa requirement was designed to screen out terrorists and other dangerous individuals from entering the European Union, but it will also apply to Americans who are planning to visit Europe in the future, even if they don’t need a visa now.

If you plan to travel to the Schengen area, the 26 European countries that have abolished border controls at their mutual borders within three months of your visit, you will need an ETIAS visa. But don’t stress; it isn’t as complicated as it may sounds. 

Why Is An ETIAS Needed?

If you are a citizen of a country that is not part of the European Union, you will need to obtain an ETIAS visa in order to travel to Europe. The ETIAS visa is a new requirement that was put in place in order to improve security and help control the flow of people entering the EU.

In order to get an ETIAS visa, you will need to fill out an online application and pay a fee. The application process is relatively simple and should only take a few minutes. To make sure your application goes smoothly, make sure you have a valid passport before starting.

You can apply for up to three years at a time so it is best to apply early. Make sure that all information on your form is accurate and complete as it could lead to delays or even rejection of your application if there are any errors.

Once you have submitted your application, it usually takes about 10 days to receive your ETIAS. Once received, you will need to download and print off a copy for each person traveling with you under 18 years old and carry this with you when traveling through the Schengen Area.

How Much Does The Visa Cost?

As of right now, the cost of the ETIAS visa is €7. This may revised in the upcoming years , but at present, that is the cost. The payment should be done using credit or debit card. After that, you will receive a payment email confirmation. Please note that the payment is non-refundable. 

You can also only apply for one entry at a time, so if you are planning on traveling to multiple countries during your trip, please make sure that each country’s entry is paid for separately.

You cannot use the same information when applying for two different visas for example name and birth date. Once the application has been approved and completed successfully, there will be no limits on how many times it can be used. 

However, the number of visits allowed per year will depend on what type of traveler you are. For those who are business travelers, you will be able to visit up to five times per year without needing another visa. For those who are tourists, three visits per year should suffice without needing another visa as well. If you plan on being more than a tourist, then we recommend going through the process every four months and doing this process again.

Which Countries Are Exempt From An ETIAS Application?

Currently, there are over 60 countries that are exempt from needing an ETIAS visa in order to travel to Europe. These countries include Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Barbados, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, and Honduras.

Ireland and Israel are also exempted, but they can enter via designated air or sea ports in order to be exempted from the ETIAS requirement.  The United States is not one of these countries, so citizens traveling to Europe without a valid US passport will need an ETIAS visa.

Tips for Applying and Avoiding Delays

If you are planning a trip to Europe, you may need to apply for the visa. Apply at least 3 months before your date of departure: Make sure you leave plenty of time when applying for an ETIAS visa. The processing time can take up to 72 hours, so make sure you don’t submit your application too close to your departure date in order to give yourself enough time for it to be processed.

Avoid any potential mistakes:

Read the instructions carefully and try not to miss any important information when filling out the form. There are penalties for providing false or misleading information. Therefore, make sure to only fill in the relevant fields for your personal circumstances.

It’s worth double-checking that all the details on the form match up with those on your passport once submitted.  If there is anything wrong or missing, contact the National Police Support Center within 24 hours of submitting the application for ETIAS visa and they will rectify this as soon as possible.

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