The European Commission has announced that the Travel Information and Authorisation System for Europe (ETIAS) will not enter into operation until 2025. The system, which was initially scheduled to begin in 2021, is designed to provide pre-travel online authorisation to eligible visitors wanting to visit countries within the Schengen area. The delay in implementation has been due to the complex nature of developing the IT system and the need to ensure it complies with EU laws. The Commission has stated that the delay will enable it to complete the final technical and legal aspects of the system.
The system will work by collecting a range of data on travellers who apply for an ETIAS authorisations and will help to better manage migration, protect the external borders of Schengen countries, while at the same time enabling visa-exempt travellers to gain access when visiting the Schengen area.
It is expected that the system will provide increased security and will reduce the number of travellers who enter the EU illegally. The new system will also prove beneficial for those seeking to travel to Europe legitimately, who will no longer have to go through the traditional, manual visa processes.
Once the system is up and running, all travellers who wish to visit the Schengen zone will require an ETIAS authorisation.