If you’re planning on visiting the UK, you’ll have to get to know the UK’s new ETA system from 2023 onward. This new scheme requires many visitors, including Liechtensteiners, to apply for permission to visit the UK in the form of an ETA. Learn how this system will work and how to apply for an ETA for Liechtensteiner citizens in this guide.
What Is the UK ETA for Liechtensteiner Nationals?
The UK’s new ETA system is being launched in 2023, with full implementation by the end of 2024. An ETA, which stands for Electronic Travels Authorisation, is a permit scheme that’s required for entry into the UK. For those with experience travelling to the USA, the UK’s ETA is expected to be similar to the United States ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) scheme required for access.
The UK’s ETA was launched as part of the country’s new Nationality and Borders Bill. This new bill is intended to strengthen the UK’s border security, better control immigration numbers and digitise the country’s border for contactless access. For Liechtensteiner visitors, this means an application must be completed before arrival in the UK.
The new ETA rules affect 92 countries in total, including all EU countries, except for the Republic of Ireland and EEA member states like Liechtenstein. These countries do not require a visa to travel to the UK and are allowed to visit the UK for up to 180 days on short stays, like tourism or business trips.
How Will the New ETA System Affect Liechtensteiner Citizens?
The new ETA rules add an extra step to the planning process when visiting the UK. Liechtensteiners can no longer visit the UK without an ETA by simply arriving at the border. Instead, they must pre-plan their stay by completing and receiving an ETA before travel. Without an ETA, the individual will be denied entry into the country. This makes travel to the UK less effortless than throughout the EU and Schengen areas. A passport is also now required for entry into the UK alongside an ETA, where only a national ID was required until 2021.
While an ETA must now be completed before arrival, Liechtensteiners do not need to submit a visa application. Instead, the ETA is a quick online form that requires basic information and passport details. No physical documents or in-person consulate visits are required for an ETA. Those planning a lengthier stay in the UK or are marrying, settling or commencing employment must apply for a visa.
Applying for a UK ETA for Liechtensteiner Citizens
The ETA system is still being finalised, but the basic requirements have been announced. Firstly, all expected nationals that are now eligible for an ETA have been announced. This includes some 92 current visa-free countries, including Lichtenstein. A further list of requirements has been published for those preparing an application. These may change, as the ETA trials throughout 2023 before full implementation in 2024.
To apply for an ETA online, Liechtensteiner must do so through the official UK portal. The application is designed to be completed online in no more than 10 minutes. To hasten this process, the applicant should have the following at hand for input:
• A valid biometric passport issued by an eligible country, such as Lichtenstein.
• A recent digital passport-sized photograph.
• Personal details, which include the applicant’s full name(s), date of birth, occupation and contact details.
• The purpose and details of travel arrangements within the UK, such as dates.
• A credit or debit card to pay the ETA application fee.
A disclosure form much also be completed to confirm the applicant has no criminal history, has committed no immigration offences and has no membership (either past or present) of a proscribed group or organisation. These security questions may affect the outcome of an ETA, and candidates with a criminal history, for instance, may be asked to apply for a visa instead.
Processing the UK ETA for Liechtensteiner Citizens
The ETA is designed to take no more than 10 minutes. However, the processing time can take up to 72 hours. This means that applicants must allow enough time to apply and receive their ETA before they travel. The applicant will be notified by email when their ETA is confirmed. Delays and potential rejections can occur, with an appeals process for the latter. While this processing time doesn’t allow for same-day travel, it can be applied for from anywhere outside the UK, allowing for last-minute travel.
Regardless of how the applicant enters the UK, a valid ETA must be scanned or presented at the border. Carriers like airlines will be expected to check their passengers to ensure they hold a valid ETA. Failure to present an ETA may lead to the passenger being denied boarding. Upon arrival in the UK, ETAs are to be scanned at eGates in airports or presented to border security for those travelling by sea ferry.
Travelling With the UK ETA for Liechtensteiner Citizens
A UK ETA for Liechtensteiner citizens will be valid for travel across the United Kingdom, allowing them to travel throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland without any additional paperwork. This includes crown dependencies, like the Isle of Man, Jersey or Guernsey. Travellers from Liechtenstein are encouraged to review the UK ETA FAQ for additional information.
Liechtensteiners in the United Kingdom
Liechtensteiners are granted visa-free travel throughout the UK and only need to apply for an ETA online before they travel. The UK offers a wealth of attractions that appeal to visitors from Liechtenstein, including the Tower of London, St Paul’s Cathedral and the British Museum, where historic prints from Liechtenstein are on display. Despite its small population of 38,254, Liechtensteiners frequently travel to the UK for pleasure and business, with Liechtenstein being among the first signatories of the UK’s post-Brexit trade deals.