Europe is packed with incredible places to visit and many families from around the world choose a country within the Schengen Area as a destination for a family holiday. At the moment, citizens from many countries can visit European nations without a visa for periods of up to 90 days.
However, this will change in 2021 with the introduction of ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System). Visitors to the Schengen Area will need to enroll with ETIAS before travelling to any of the countries in the zone.
It will also be necessary to obtain an ETIAS for kids before travelling to the continent. The ETIAS application process will be the same regardless of age. ETIAS has been designed to strengthen the security of the area by introducing additional checks on travellers.
ETIAS for children
The ETIAS application will only take a matter of minutes to complete. Candidates will need to answer a series of questions and will need to enter a range of information such as name, date of birth, passport details, and travel plans.
The form will also include some security-related questions. It will be essential to complete the application as accurately as possible as any mistakes could lead to delays or even rejections.
If you plan to travel to Europe with kids who cannot complete the form themselves because of their age, literacy level, or any other reason, it is not a problem. A guardian (normally the parent) will be able to submit the application on their behalf.
To successfully complete the application, children will need to have a valid passport from one of the eligible countries. Once approved, the ETIAS visa waiver will be sent electronically to the email address provided on the application form.
ETIAS travel authorizations will be valid for 3 consecutive years and will allow children to enter the Schengen Area multiple times. It will be possible to spend up to 90 days in the region during any 180-day period.
An ETIAS is not transferable between passports. If a passport expires before the three-year validity of the ETIAS visa waiver, it will be necessary to apply for a new ETIAS travel authorization.
ETIAS will allow visitors to visit any of the 26 countries in the Schengen Area. As there are no ‘hard borders’ between the countries in the zone, travelling between them is easy. Once you have entered one Schengen country, you have effectively entered all of them.
What are the advantages of ETIAS?
Following a series of tragic events in some of Europe’s major cities, it became clear that there was a need to introduce stricter controls over border security. ETIAS will strengthen the external borders of the Schengen Area.
The information provided during the ETIAS registration process will be screened using various databases. This extra layer of security will make Europe a safer place for both Europeans and visitors to the region.
The whole process will be quick and straightforward. As long as there are no complications, the registration process should not take longer than 10 minutes.