Will I need an ETIAS to visit Belgium?
From 2023, U.S. citizens will have to present an approved ETIAS permit before entering Belgium. It will be possible to apply for and obtain the ETIAS visa online, by filling out the ETIAS application form online and receiving your visa via e-mail once the application is approved. This ETIAS visa will allow U.S. citizens to enter Belgium for work, tourism, transit, or medical reasons, provided that the duration of the trip is no more than 90 days, and the visa will be valid for multiple entries made via air, sea, or land. Moreover, minors and people over 70 years of age will be able to apply for this visa free of charge.
What is ETIAS Belgium for U.S. citizens?
ETIAS visa will come into force in 2023, as part of a program of the European Commission aimed at strengthening European borders and keeping a digital track on all people travelling to the territories of the European Schengen Area.
How does ETIAS Belgium permit work for Americans
Starting from November 2023 U.S. citizens must have an ETIAS visa before embarking on a trip to Belgium. If the trip is longer than 90 days or has other reasons than those required for the ETIAS visa, they will require a Schengen visa at the embassy or consulate of Belgium, respecting requirements and timing for the permit they are applying for.
ETIAS destination countries for Americans
From November 2023 ETIAS visa will come into force for Americans to travel to the following countries:
- Czech Republic
- San Marino
At the time being, U.S. citizens are not required to have ETIAS to travel to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, and Romania, since these countries are not Schengen Area members yet. However, these countries may enter the Schengen Area in the future, so please keep updated with the permit requirements.
ETIAS permit requirements in Belgium for Americans and how to apply
To apply for ETIAS Belgium, you will need to be a U.S. citizen and hold a valid electronic passport issued by the United States of America. If you do not have an U.S. passport, you will require a Schengen permit.
The ETIAS permit application can be completed online, entering all necessary information by following the required steps, and making sure all the data is entered correctly.
Once the application is completed, all citizens between 18 and 70 years old will also be required to pay a 7 euros fee, using a credit or debit card.
Typically, most ETIAS are issued within few minutes, or at most in a few hours, and you will receive the approved visa via e-mail as a PDF file.
Moreover, you will not need to print the visa, because all the information will already be in the European Schengen authorities’ databases, and those data will be linked to the passport data provided during the application.
However, to avoid delays, it is recommended to apply for the ETIAS permit at least 4 days prior to the departure, to make sure that the visa is approved and to have the time to provide any additional documents should they be required.
If an ETIAS is not approved, you can apply for a Schengen visa at the embassy or consulate of Belgium.
It is highly recommended to carefully read and check all the requirements for the ETIAS visa before applying, to avoid any mistakes in the application that could result in delays in the ETIAS approval.
How much does ETIAS cost for Americans
The ETIAS application for Americans has a cost of 7 euros for all citizens between 18 and 70 years old, which has to be paid at the end of the online application process, using a credit or debit card. Citizens under 18 and over 70 years of age are entitled to apply for ETIAS permit free of charge.
Belgium has experienced war over its land for centuries, in modern times these battles have included the Battle of Waterloo and the First and Second World Wars. Although devastated by the occupation of its land during those years it has experienced an economic boom in recent times.
Belgium is a low-lying country bordering the North Sea; it shares a maritime border with the United Kingdom. Land borders are at France, Germany, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
Belgium covers an area of 11.787 mi²
Geographically, it consists of three main areas:-
- Lower Belgium – up to 100 meters above sea level
- Central Belgium – between 100 and 200 meters above sea level
- Upper Belgium – from 200 to over 500 meters above sea level.
Belgium, whose capital city is Brussels has a population of more than eleven million people.
The two main languages spoken are French and Flemish.
French is spoken predominantly by people from the southern provinces, who are collectively called Walloons.
Flemish (Dutch) is spoken predominantly by people from the northern and northeastern provinces, who are collectively called Flemings.
Some areas are officially bilingual French and Flemish and a small area where German is spoken. The main religion in Belgium is Christianity. The official currency is the Euro.
Belgium at a glance
Timezone: UTC/GMT +1 hour
Languages: Dutch 60%, French 40%
Area: 30,510 KM2
Currency: Euro (EUR)
Calling Code: +43
Travel to Belgium
Gastronomically, Belgium has a variety of options, From the highly ranked Belgian restaurants that feature in the Michelin Guides, to the popular Fritkot, where you buy your fries to enjoy as you walk, or to take into a local bar that will serve you a cold beer as an accompaniment.
Belgium and chocolate are synonymous, with many famous manufacturers exporting their chocolate all over the world. In some of the larger cities, there are smaller producers with excellent varieties well worth sampling.
The coastline, which stretches for 65 km is a popular tourist destination especially in the summer months, as are the forests that are spread throughout the whole country. The Ardennes is the picturesque green heart of Belgium, and the southernmost part benefits from a microclimate, far milder than the rest of the country.
Belgium is a country of contrasts, encompassing wonderful countryside walks and cycle rides, gastronomic tours and sophisticated city nightlife.
For a country so richly overflowing with history, architecture, and culture, it certainly can appeal to the most diverse group of travelers.
The US and Belgium
Belgium is home to more than a thousand public and private international organizations.
Belgium is host country of the headquarters of
- NATO (the North Atlantic Treaty Organization)
- the E.U. (the European Union),
- SHAPE (the Supreme Headquarters Allied Power Europe)
- and the General Secretariat of the Benelux,
Belgium plays a major role in both Transatlantic and European diplomacy.
The United States and Belgium enjoy a good friendship and are close allies, with America’s part in helping Belgium gain liberation from Nazi Germany being remembered with goodwill and trust.
The two nations have established commercial interests, with Belgium hosting many US firms European offices. Taking part in numerous multilateral and bilateral trade and investment agreements have been mutually beneficial.
Roughly three-quarters of Belgium’s present trade is conducted with other members of the European Union, but it continues to expand its trade opportunities with non-EU countries.
Travelers to Belgium benefit from its central location in Europe and its advanced transport links.
Most travelers arriving on long-haul international flights arrive at Brussels Zaventem Airport conveniently located only twenty minutes from the city center.
Until the ETIAS scheme comes into effect in 2021 increased security measures in place at Belgium borders are likely to remain. Potential criminal activity is being met proactively.
Security operations, if needed, are highly likely to be carried out with no advance warning, Areas such as transport hubs, public transport and other locations frequented by visiting foreigners are potential locations of activity.
Police have specifically asked that members of the public do not comment on police operations on social media.
FAQ about etias Belgium
List of US diplomatic offices in Belgium
The Embassy of USA in Brussels, Belgium
Address: Regentlaan 27 Boulevard du Régent, B-1000 Brussels Belgium
Phone: (32-2) 811-4000
Fax: (32-2) 811-4500
Facts: Ronald J. Gidwitz – Ambassador
The Embassy of Belgium in Washington, USA
Address: 3330 Garfield Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20008 United States
Phone: +1 202 333 69 00
Fax: +1 202 338 49 60
Facts: Dirk Wouters – Ambassador
Consulate of Belgium in New York, USA
Address: One Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza, 885 Second Ave, 41st Fl New York, NY 10017 United States
Phone: +1 212 586 51 10
Consulate of Belgium in Los Angeles, USA
Address: 6300, Wilshire Boulevard – Suite 720 Los Angeles, CA 90048 United States
Phone: +1 323 857 12 44
Consulate of Belgium in Atlanta, USA
Address: 2445 Hollywood Blvd. Hollywood, FL, 33022-2480
Phone: (954) 925.1100
Fax: (954) 925.1101