Soon all people, including children, who can currently visit Spain without a visa will need to apply for a travel authorization prior to their trip.
They will have to apply for something called the ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain.
What is the ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain?
ETIAS stands for European Travel Information and Authorization System and the plan of this new policy is to improve immigration security at European borders.
Who needs ETIAS to travel to Spain?
At the moment, there are sixty two countries which are visa-except when traveling to Spain and other Schengen Area countries, but whose citizens will soon need to apply for an ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain.
These sixty two countries include the USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Malaysia, Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, and Peru.
Spain is part of the Schengen Area, along with twenty six other member countries. Most, but not all, of these twenty six countries are located in the EU.
Other Schengen Area countries include Germany, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, and Switzerland.
How to apply for an ETIAS for Spain?
Speed and simplicity of application are a priority when obtaining an ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain.
Forms will be completed online and, in the vast majority of instances, an ETIAS application will be completed in less than ten minutes.
Visa Waiver Requirements for Spain include debit/credit card to pay a fee, email address, and valid passport (minimum of three months before expiry).
Questions will be asked on various topics, including past European travel, criminal history, employment history, travel to conflict areas, and drug use.
It is advised to apply for an ETIAS for Spain at least 72 hours prior to travel.
Approved EU Visa Waivers will be valid for three years and cover stays of up to ninety days within a 180 day period.
How much it cost the EU ETIAS for Spain?
The ETIAS cost will be nominal. A small fee of 7€ per person will be required to apply for an ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain.
When the ETIAS Visa Waiver for Spain become mandatory?
The new EU Visa Waiver will become mandatory for travelers by the end of 2024.
There is a very similar system already in place in the US with the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).
This is also an online visa waiver program that permits stays of up to ninety days, but this time for international travelers to the US.
ESTA has been running since 2009 and the similarity between the new ETIAS Visa Waiver and ESTA has led many people to call ETIAS the European ESTA.