95% likelihood British citizens will require an ETIAS after Brexit.
*ETIAS will not be required while the UK is still in the EU.
Will British citizens require an ETIAS to visit EU member countries after Brexit?
The position of the EU since November 2018 has been that British citizens will most likely require an ETIAS, a visa waiver, to visit EU member countries starting in 2021 in the event the UK has left the European Union. The EU has yet to formalise this requirement as the UK’s departure is still being negotiated with the EU and debated in the UK government.
However, if the UK does not depart the EU, then an ETIAS nor Schengen Visa will be required for British citizens travelling to EU member countries.
Is there a chance a Schengen Visa be required for British citizens any time after Brexit or before ETIAS?
There is a small but considerable chance a Schengen visa will be required for British citizens instead of an ETIAS. This is only because the ETIAS requirement has not been formalised.
Etias.com has provided analysis on the topic of if a Schengen Visa would be required by British citizens, and although the probability is low, it is still a possibility. There are significant differences between ETIAS and Schengen Visas that travellers should consider when planning EU travel.
Why does it matter if an ETIAS or Schengen Visa is required for British citizens?
At the proposed cost of €7 per application, the cost of an ETIAS will be a fraction of a Schengen visa application, which is currently priced at €60. Also, a Schengen visa requires applicants to submit their applications in person at the consulate of the intended destination country. ETIAS will be an online travel authorisation which will be obtainable online, starting in 2021. An ETIAS would also provide travellers more flexibility. A Schengen visa is valid for a period of up to 90 days in any given 180 day period of time. An approved ETIAS, on the other hand, will be valid for three years or the date of passport expiry (whichever comes first), and can be used for stays of up to 90 days in a 180 day period.
I already have a passport for another EU member country, will I require an ETIAS?
If you have a passport from an EU member country, then you will not need ETIAS as long as you travel on the passport of an ETIAS or EU member country in question.
I have residency status in an EU member country, yet based on the ETIAS requirements, it states I need an ETIAS. Does my residency status mean I don’t need ETIAS?
No, if you hold a passport from a country where ETIAS is a requirement, you will need an ETIAS in 2021 regardless of your residency status in an EU member country. However, if you hold a passport or citizenship in another EU member country, you will not require an approved ETIAS.
What happens if I have a criminal record, contagious disease, or other history which may affect my admissibility?
The EU has yet to formalise the exact conditions, criminal history, and other disqualifying factors which will result in a denied or ineligible ETIAS application. If a British citizen is denied an ETIAS due to criminal history, medical conditions, or other personal history which is deemed as a security risk to the EU, the applicant will be given the option to appeal the decision to the EU member country which has denied the applicant’s ETIAS request. The EU has yet to specify another process or alternate travel authorisation for applicant’s who have had their ETIAS appeal requests denied.
Where can I learn more about travel authorisation requirements for British citizens after Brexit or in the event of no Brexit?
- Gibraltar contention may determine if British travellers need Schengen Visa or ETIAS
- UK Citizens will need an ETIAS in a "no-deal" Brexit scenario
- EU Commission confirms ETIAS requirement for British Citizens