If you are a Saint Lucian passport holder hoping to travel to Schengen countries like France, Italy, Greece, Spain, and Germany after late-2022, you will need an ETIAS authorization.
The ETIAS (European Travel Information and Authorization System) was implemented to protect the many internal borders of the Schengen Zone, ensuring that serious criminals and high-risk individuals are not allowed to step foot on EU soil. That way, they can keep the area safe and free of drug smugglers, traffickers, and other serious criminals.
ETIAS Visa Waiver for Saint Lucia Citizens
Although the ETIAS application requires an extra step before you travel, it’s a very quick and easy one. In fact, it takes less than 10 minutes to complete an ETIAS application and it’s entirely virtual, with the application form hosted on the official ETIAS website.
The ETIAS doesn’t apply to all countries and there are generally three different groups.
Firstly, there are the countries within the Schengen Zone itself, including Germany, Spain, Austria, and Denmark. Residents of these countries have freedom of movement and can travel to other Schengen countries without issue. If you are a resident of Greece, for instance, you can travel to Spain and Italy without completing an ETIAS. In fact, you won’t even need a passport and can travel with a national ID card.
The second group covers those who need a visa to visit the Schengen Zone, including many countries in Africa and Asia. A Schengen Visa is much harder to acquire than a visa-waiver and there are several more steps involved.
The final group covers those who need an ETIAS visa waiver, which includes around 60 countries worldwide, including Saint Lucia.
How Long Is the ETIAS Valid for?
To complete an ETIAS visa waiver, you will need to own a Saint Lucia passport (or a passport from another applicable country), and it must be valid for at least 3 months from the date of travel.
Once ETIAS authorization has been granted, it will remain valid for up to 3 years, although it will expire sooner if the associated passport expires or authorization is removed for security reasons.
An ETIAS owner is allowed to travel throughout the Schengen Zone during that 3-year period, but they can only stay for up to 90 days within a 180-day period.
Where Can Saint Lucians Visit with an ETIAS?
One of the great things about the ETIAS is that a single application applies to all Schengen countries. You don’t need to complete multiple applications and one authorization will allow you to freely cross borders into other Schengen countries, providing you don’t exceed the 90-day limit.
The Schengen Zone is not static, and additional countries are expected to join in years to come. At the time of writing, the nations that have signed this agreement (and can therefore be visited with an ETIAS) include:
- Czech Republic
Where Do Saint Lucians Want to Go On Vacation?
It seems that most Saint Lucia passport holders have their sights set on Abu Dhabi, according to a 2021 report published by travel company Kuoni. They are not alone in this, either, as many neighboring nations place locations like Dubai and Abu Dhabi at the top of their bucket lists.
Which Countries Can Saint Lucians Visit Without a Visa?
The United Kingdom is open to Saint Lucian passport holders and doesn’t require a visa. If you have a valid passport, then you can visit the UK (England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland) for up to 6 months at a time.
The United States is a little less inviting and a visa is required before you step foot on USA soil. Other popular tourist destinations that grant visa-free access to Saint Lucians include Tunisia, Singapore, Malaysia, Kenya, Jamaica, Israel, Indonesia, Cuba, Costa Rica, and Argentina.