European Union | Immigration | Delay in implementation of EES and ETIAS

January 25, 2023

24 January 2023

European Union | Immigration | Delay in implementation of EES and ETIAS

Impact High


The implementation date from the Entry/Exit System (EES) has been further postponed from May 2023 to November 2023. This may also result in a delay in the implementation the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS), which is currently set for late 2023.

The Detail

The implementation of the Entry/Exit System (EES), which is taking place together with the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) by the European Union as part of the 2016 Smart Borders Package, has been postponed again to end of 2023. The EES is an IT system for the automatic monitoring of the border crossings of third-country nationals into the EU. The system will be installed at the external border crossing points of the Schengen Area (e.g. seaports, airports, land crossing points). This system will replace current manual processes, such as the physical stamping of passports.

The EES is closely connected to ETIAS, which is a registration system for visa-exempt visitors travelling to the EU/EFTA/Schengen area. Travellers who are visa-exempt for short stays (up to 90 days in a rolling 180 day period) may currently simply enter the Schengen area on the basis of their passports and will be stamped upon entry and exit. However, once ETIAS goes live, those nationals will generally be required to complete an online registration form prior to travel. The authorisation will be valid for 3 years and will allow them to enter and exit the Schengen area freely as long as the 90 days’ stay in 180 days is not exceeded. Travellers will be required to include personal details on the form, including education, occupation, travel history and criminal antecedents (if applicable), and pay a fee of EUR 7 per person.

The main aim of ETIAS and EES is to more efficiently and diligently manage cross-border movement to and from the EU and prevent cross-border crime and terrorism. While it will practically impact many travellers who are currently permitted to enter the Schengen area simply on the basis of their passports without prior registrations being required, it is not expected that it will restrict travel for any particular group.

Initially due to launch in 2022, the implementation of EES was delayed until May 2023 and ETIAS would subsequently go live at the end of 2023. It is now understood that EES and ETIAS will both launch before the end of 2023.

The cause for the delay is likely concerns from member states regarding the practical operability of EES, especially at busy airports during the summer months. With EES requiring travellers to provide their fingerprints, which is a new step in the border crossing procedure, it may be that the delay will allow for more time to implement the necessary processes and systems to ensure a steady flow of travellers through border controls. With the launch of ETIAS being closely linked to the launch of EES, further delays cannot be excluded.

What this means?

We advise employers to be aware of the upcoming changes with ETIAS and EES and to make sure their mobile workforce are informed of any actions they may need to take prior to travelling. In the meantime, entry requirements and border crossing processes into the EU/Schengen area remain unchanged.

How we can help

Vialto Team is continually monitoring developments and will provide further updates in due course.

Contact us

For a deeper discussion on the above, please reach out to your Vialto Partners point of contact, or alternatively:

• Hugo Vijge, Senior Manager, Europe Immigration Advisory Lead |
• Stefan Lang, Manager |

Further information on Vialto Partners can be found here:

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