To visit Austria, people from eligible nations will soon require an ETIAS visa waiver. Europe’s Travel Authorization will be available from the year 2022 and it will be compulsory after its launch. Each year more than 40 million people visit Austria due to its eye-catching architecture mainly its palaces, museums, and well-maintained countryside. The country is a famous winter sports target. When the ETIAS visa waiver will be executed, the nation will be even safe for visitors. The European visa waiver is introducing throughout the Schengen Area to enhance security.
The General Information about Austria
The Republic of Austria is surrounded by land in central Europe and has an area of only 32,000 sq. miles. When it comes to the location of Austria in the Alps, it is mainly mountainous with just a quarter of the country being low-lying. The Alps constitute approximately 3/4 of Austria and the Eastern Alps make up for 62% of the total area of the country. Austria shares a border with eight other ETIAS countries including Slovenia, Hungary, Italy, Germany, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. It makes Austria the right place from which anyone can explore most of central Europe. Austria has a cool climate with westerly, humid winds. The nation has primarily the alpine climate. In Austria, the summers are warmer and the temperature reached 20 ºC on average while the winter temperatures fall to -10ºC. The capital of Austria is Vienna and is the largest city in the country. Vienna has a population of 1.9 million and each year welcomes more than 7 million tourists. The city has been consistently classified as the most liveable city in the world.
Austria and the European Union
In January 1995, Austria became a member of the EU right at the time as Finland and Sweden. Currently, the European Parliament has 18 members from Austria. The country has also advantaged from signing the Schengen agreement. In 1995, when Austria eliminates its borders it became a part of a border-free travel area. Recently, the country has been involved in ETIAS development i.e. a system that involves the pre-screening of third-country tourists before they enter the Schengen Zone. When this new system will be operational, visitors and locals will advantage of enhanced security in European Union due to the ETIAS. This will legally prevent potentially risky people from entering Europe.
The nation provides the chance to explore fascinating villages and mountainous sceneries. Austria is a wonderful country having lots of historical landmarks and captivating tourist attractions. The visa liberalization policy of Europe has motivated a large number of tourists across the world to visit Austria recently. Tourists who can get the benefit of this system will have to apply for an ETIAS visa from 2022 onwards before entering Austria. Moreover, as Austria is bordered by 8 other ETIAS countries, it can be accessed from other wonderful European travel destinations, supported by a border-free drive in the Schengen Zone. In Austria, English is widely spoken, mainly in the capital of the country as well as in hotels, restaurants, shops, and tourist areas. You can easily explore Austria due to its efficient transport services and comparatively small size. Train and bus routes link the main cities and towns while great road set-up makes it likely to witness lots of the striking natural landscapes.
Is Medical Insurance Required For visiting Austria?
Nationals of other European Union nations must carry their European Health Insurance Card with them while visiting Austria. Holders of EHIC card can get healthcare throughout Europe. Non-European Union citizens may need to obtain medical insurance to visit Austria. It depends on the permit type they are required to visit Europe.
Health Insurance for ETIAS Austria
Citizens of the nations involved in the visa liberalization policy of Europe don’t have to take out medical insurance to get an ETIAS visa. Though health insurance is not one of the requirements to get ETIAS for Austria, it is suggested for overseas visitors to consider medical insurance to enjoy the tour to Austria with peace of mind.
Medical Insurance for Schengen Visa for Austria
The citizens of third-country who are not eligible for ETIAS have to apply for a Schengen visa for Austria to visit the country. Being a traditional form of visa application, it will require more paperwork including proof of medical insurance. The medical insurance policy should be €30,000 at the minimum and must be valid for the whole Schengen Zone. In case proof of medical insurance is not provided, the visa application will be rejected.
Moving across the Borders of Austria
As we know that the Schengen Zone has no internal borders, the European Union nationals must simply carry their identity documents while crossing the Austrian border checkpoints. The Visa liberalization policy of Europe means that many non-European Union citizens can enter Austria without a visa application and just a valid passport is needed. This will change with the implementation of the ETIAS visa waiver in 2022. This visa waiver will be compulsory for all non-Europeans who qualified for visa-free entry to the Schengen Zone. Since the ETIAS visa waiver is connected to the passport electronically, visitors won’t have to take along or show any extra documents on arrival at the Austrian border. Citizens from other nations will be required to show the following documents before getting access to Austria:
- A Schengen Visa
- A valid passport for up to 3 months from the exit date from Schengen Zone
- The evidence for onward travel, for instance, a return ticket
- Proof of capitals to cover the whole stay in Austria
You may be asked about the length of stay and the purpose of the visit while entering Austria.
Entering Austria by Train, Car, and Plane
The central airport in Austria is the Vienna International Airport and it is where the most international flights arrive. This airport is situated in Schwechat and is approximately 18 kilometers from the center of Vienna. Eurowings Europe and Austrian Airlines are the primary airlines operating out of Vienna International Airport along with other low-cost airlines. It is a convenient and popular choice for travelers from overseas due to year-round flights. Speedy trains are another way of transportation in Austria that link the country with neighboring countries including Italy, Germany, Hungary, and France and they all can be visited by rail. The bus is another choice and is a great way of transportation for trips to cities and towns near the Austrian border. From Salzburg to Munich, a bus takes less than 3 hours and the tickets are available at a relatively low price. Motorists must make sure that they carry their passport with an attached ETIAS visa waiver or a valid Schengen visa while moving across the border.
In addition to the captivating capital, Vienna, many other cities and towns in Austria are worth visiting:
- Feldkirch: An inspiring medieval city center
- Salzburg: The baroque architecture and Hohensalzburg fortress
- Graz: Lively nightlife and a large student body
- Innsbruck: Admirable mountain sceneries, surrounded by ski resorts
Austria has some of the most well-known musicians and artists across the world. The legacy of Schubert, Klimt, Mozart, and more is substantial in Austria currently. Their work is well-kept in various galleries and museums. Skier enthusiast throughout the world visits Austria in the winter season each year. The top ski resorts in Austria include Sölden, Kitzbühel, and St. Anton am Arlberg. The Austrian landscapes provide something for all kinds of visitors from beginners to expert snowboarders and skiers. Austria is an enticing destination for those having a sweet tooth. The smell of fresh cakes and pastries from bakeries and cafes fill the streets of Austria. Tourists are suggested to taste the famous Apfelstrudel.
Europe’s Travel Authorization for Austria
By the end of 2022, the visa waiver for Austria will be accessible for non-European Union nationals from visa-exempt states. The travelers from eligible countries will have to apply online by completing the application form with their passport information and personal information. Applicants will have to reply to some security questions and pay free for an ETIAS visa with a credit or debit card. When the ETIAS visa will be confirmed, the nationals of the third-country can travel to Europe for 3 successive years before the ETIAS visa expires or until the expiry of the passport. The visa permit is multiple-entry and valid for 90 days stay in a 180-day time.
Frequently asked Questions (FAQs)
Which countries can I visit from Austria?
Austria shares a border with 8 ETIAS countries that are all in the Schengen Zone. The country takes advantage of having a central position in Europe. Since the Schengen travel area is a border-free zone so it is possible to access all the neighboring countries without being stopped at borders. The countries that can be visited with the same ETIAS permit are Italy, Slovakia, Slovenia, Germany, Hungary, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, and Liechtenstein. Also, there are direct flights to some famous tourist destinations like France and Spain.
What type of visa do I require to travel to Austria?
Passport holders from non-European Union visa-exempt countries can visit Austria without a visa as long as they are registered with ETIAS before entering Austria. ETIAS Austria will be compulsory after its implementation at the end of the year 2022. The ETIAS visa application is an online process and you will require a valid passport, credit or debit card, and email address to complete the visa application process. Non-European Union nationals who are not eligible for an ETIAS visa will probably require a Schengen visa for Austria. There are different kinds of Schengen visas based on the purpose for travel. You will also require additional documents to get a visa including evidence of medical insurance and funds.
What documents will I require to visit Austria?
Soon, the ETIAS authorization will enable tourists from eligible countries to visit Austria without the need for a visa for Europe. The ETIAS visa for Austria is valid for transit, tourism, and business purposes. ETIAS will accompany Europe’s visa liberalization program and the people having valid passports will enjoy visa-free entry to Austria and other parts of the Schengen Zone as long as they register for ETIAS. All you need to have to apply for an ETIAS visa is a passport issued by ETIAS eligible country and a credit or debit card. When the ETIAS application for Austria is confirmed, a permit is connected electronically to the passport and verified at the airport by scanning your passport.