The European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS), the visa waiver program designed to protect and strengthen the EU’s borders, introduced a new rule for entering the Schengen Area, it is said in a press release.
Non-EU citizens travelling to the EU, including Americans, Australians, Brits and other travellers from outside the Schengen zone, will need to fill out a €7 application to get in from next year. Under the so-called ‘90 day rule’, citizens of these and many other countries are only allowed to spend up to 90 days, in every 180 in the EU. Any longer and they need a visa, as Euronews reported.
ETIAS is set to come into force before the end of 2022. new rule is intended to “increase security and help prevent health threats to the bloc”.
At the moment there are 60 eligible countries that will be required to submit an online ETIAS application. Many of these countries’ citizens can currently travel to Europe without the need of a visa. The ETIAS for Europe is a system that will pre-screen travelers before they even board a plane. All information provided on the ETIAS application will be closely examined and checked against security databases.
The ETIAS visa waiver will be valid for short-term stays and for business or leisure purposes. Those who wish to study and work in Europe for more than 90 consecutive days will need to apply for a different visa. Once approved, an ETIAS can be used for three years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first. The EU decided to implement ETIAS to improve security in the Schengen Area. By obtaining a travel authorization, visa-free travelers will still undergo a security check prior to their arrival to the EU.
Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Cyprus and Ireland do not form part of the Schengen Area and do not have special rules concerning travel authorizations.