Skip to content

The EU has postponed the ETIAS 'e-visa' until November 2023

Aug. 03, 2022
6 min read
passport control area
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The European Union has quietly postponed the rollout of the long-awaited European Travel Information and Authorisation System visa program, meaning American and British travelers will no longer need to apply for the European visa waivers before next summer.

Originally, the new “e-visa” program was slated to begin May 2023. It would require that travelers from countries outside of the Schengen Area be fingerprinted and pay a fee to visit France, Spain and other EU nations.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

European Commission bigwigs have now decided to delay the scheme until November 2023.

“ETIAS is indeed now scheduled to enter into operation as of November 2023, according to current planning," a spokesperson for the European Commission told TPG.

Related: Europe to require new entry fee for visitors

What is ETIAS?

ETIAS logo
(Screenshot from schengenvisainfo.com)

ETIAS is a visa-waiver scheme similar to the current Electronic System for Travel Authorization used in the U.S. The form will act as a preauthorization system to allow travelers from 63 third countries (the list is here) outside of the Schengen Area — including the United Kingdom and U.S. — to enter the region for up to 90 days within a 180-day period, without a full visa.

Similar to ESTA in the U.S., ETIAS will cross-check visitor information with government databases and watchlists before issuing authorization to enter. The information collected will also be used in data tracking for business and tourism purposes.

ETIAS covers European countries that are part of the Schengen Area travel agreement; the region includes most the EU, with the addition of Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein but minus Ireland. An individual’s ETIAS authorization will be valid for an unlimited number of entries over three years.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Countries in the Schengen Area that will require ETIAS include:

  • Austria.
  • Belgium.
  • The Czech Republic.
  • Denmark.
  • Estonia.
  • Finland.
  • France.
  • Germany.
  • Greece.
  • Hungary.
  • Iceland.
  • Italy.
  • Latvia.
  • Liechtenstein.
  • Lithuania.
  • Luxembourg.
  • Malta.
  • The Netherlands.
  • Norway.
  • Poland.
  • Portugal.
  • Slovakia.
  • Slovenia.
  • Spain.
  • Sweden.
  • Switzerland.

“The ETIAS will be an automated IT system created to identify any security or irregular migratory risks posed by visa-exempt visitors traveling to the Schengen area, whilst at the same time facilitate crossing borders for the vast majority of travellers who do not pose such risks," according to the European Commission.

How much will it cost and what information will I have to provide?

The ETIAS will cost 7 euros (about $7) for a three-year permit that allows “third-country nationals” to enter the Schengen Area for up to 90 days within a 180-day period. Only visitors who are between the ages of 18 and 70 will need to pay the application fee, but those of all ages will still need ETIAS authorization to enter.

Travelers will be asked to provide details of health, education and any criminal convictions, as well as their fingerprints and a facial biometric.

Who needs to apply for ETIAS?

American citizens (and those from the 62 other non-EU countries that are not currently required to apply for visas) will need ETIAS authorization to enter the EU for visits of up to 90 days; this includes transit passengers.

If you have applied separately for a visa to enter Europe, you will not need to complete the ETIAS application.

Related: What is the Schengen Area and what European countries are included?

When and where will ETIAS go into effect?

This launch of this long-planned system has been pushed from May 2023 to November 2023.

At that point, airlines and other transport systems will be required to check for ETIAS authorization prior to allowing passenger boarding, and visitors will be required to complete the application process prior to travel. At land borders, visitors can complete the application at an electronic kiosk. British citizens will benefit from using an online application system to apply for ETIAS.

How do you apply for ETIAS?

The ETIAS application process. (Screenshot from schengenvisainfo.com)

Before traveling, you’ll need to access the ETIAS online application to input passport information, name, date and place of birth, an email address, phone number, and a credit or debit card to submit the payment fee. You’ll also need to provide your destination, as well as answer a few background and profile questions. The ETIAS website indicates the form should take about 10 minutes to complete.

Approval for most applicants should take a matter of minutes. However, if an item is flagged in the application, a manual review must take place. The applicant can then either correct the improperly entered information or appeal a denial decision.

What does the postponement mean for travel?

For American travelers, it simply means they will be spared the fuss of having to apply for the ETIAS e-visa until November 2023.

However, on a more practical level, it also gives the European transport industry more time to smooth out issues that have plagued the industry this summer; some of these issues include long wait times at airports and Channel crossings, as well as flight delays and cancellations.

Related: Relax: Americans won’t need a visa to travel to Europe anytime soon

British ferry operators have voiced concerns regarding the extra time it could take to process travelers under the new system at the borders. They do not want a repeat of last month’s “critical incident” that brought motorways to a standstill as vacationers flocked to British ports to get away for the first week of the school summer holidays.

In the extra time, they hope to implement a streamlined enrollment system, so travelers can preregister their biometric information instead of doing it in person at the border. In-person registration, they say, could cripple their operational capacity.

Moving the launch from May to November will also give operators the chance to ease into the new system at a time when demand for European travel is low.

How will my personal data be stored?

The European Commission has attempted to soften privacy fears, insisting that the ETIAS is not a visa and therefore includes a far less intrusive application process.

“There is no need to go to a consulate to make an application, no biometric data is collected and significantly less information is gathered than during a visa application procedure,” the European Commission said.

Bottom line

Americans planning to visit Europe don't need to take any immediate action. However, be prepared to go through one more step and pay one more fee in the traveling process as part of the ETIAS implementation in November 2023. Stay tuned to TPG for further developments related to this program.

Additional reporting by Bill Fink.

Featured image by Featured photo by Jeffrey Greenberg/UIG/Getty Images.
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

TPG featured card

Best luxury travel rewards card
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

5X points
5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

Intro offer

Earn 80,000 Points
Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

Annual Fee

$695

Recommended Credit

670-850
Excellent/Good
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

Sometimes it's worth a large investment to reap the benefits of a great credit card. That's exactly the case with the Amex Platinum card. In exchange for the annual fee, you'll unlock access to the Amex Membership Rewards program that let you access airline and hotel transfer partners, along with new lifestyle and travel credits. This card is also incredibly rewarding for travel purchases, helping you rack up a ton of Membership Rewards points for your next award trip.

Pros

  • The current welcome offer on this card is quite lucrative. TPG values it at $1,600.
  • This card comes with a long list of benefits, including access to Centurion Lounges, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott, at least $500 in assorted annual statement credits and so much more. (Enrollment required for select benefits.)
  • The Amex Platinum comes with access to a premium concierge service that can help you with everything from booking hard-to-get reservations to finding destination guides to help you plan out your next getaway.

Cons

  • The high annual fee is only worth it if you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits. Seldom travelers may not get enough value to warrant the cost.
  • Outside of the current welcome bonus, you’re only earning higher rewards on specific airfare and hotel purchases, so it’s not a great card for other spending categories.
  • The annual airline fee statement credit can be complicated to take advantage of compared to the broader travel credits offered by competing premium cards.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Ups are excluded.
  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • Get up to $300 back per calendar year on the Equinox+ digital fitness app, or eligible Equinox club memberships when you pay with your Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.
  • Breeze through security with CLEAR® lanes available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your membership when you use your Card. Learn more.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Apply for The Platinum Card® from American Express
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best luxury travel rewards card
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

    Earn 80,000 Points
  • Annual Fee

    $695
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

Sometimes it's worth a large investment to reap the benefits of a great credit card. That's exactly the case with the Amex Platinum card. In exchange for the annual fee, you'll unlock access to the Amex Membership Rewards program that let you access airline and hotel transfer partners, along with new lifestyle and travel credits. This card is also incredibly rewarding for travel purchases, helping you rack up a ton of Membership Rewards points for your next award trip.

Pros

  • The current welcome offer on this card is quite lucrative. TPG values it at $1,600.
  • This card comes with a long list of benefits, including access to Centurion Lounges, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott, at least $500 in assorted annual statement credits and so much more. (Enrollment required for select benefits.)
  • The Amex Platinum comes with access to a premium concierge service that can help you with everything from booking hard-to-get reservations to finding destination guides to help you plan out your next getaway.

Cons

  • The high annual fee is only worth it if you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits. Seldom travelers may not get enough value to warrant the cost.
  • Outside of the current welcome bonus, you’re only earning higher rewards on specific airfare and hotel purchases, so it’s not a great card for other spending categories.
  • The annual airline fee statement credit can be complicated to take advantage of compared to the broader travel credits offered by competing premium cards.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Ups are excluded.
  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • Get up to $300 back per calendar year on the Equinox+ digital fitness app, or eligible Equinox club memberships when you pay with your Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.
  • Breeze through security with CLEAR® lanes available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your membership when you use your Card. Learn more.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees