Electronic travel authorisation(ETA) for the UK
Electronic travel authorisation (ETA) gives you permission to travel to the UK. The applicant must be seeking permission to enter the UK as either:
(i) a Visitor (other than a Marriage/Civil Partnership Visitor), staying in the UK for up to 6 months; or
(ii) a Creative Worker who is seeking entry to the UK pursuant to paragraph Appendix Temporary Work – Creative Worker at CRV 3.2.
Our blog is a summary of key information and full details are published by Home Office in their Immigration Rules and Home Office guidance. You should always follow the most recent immigration rules and Home Office guidance applicable at the date of your application.
Nationals of which countries require ETA and when
An Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) is required by specified nationals in advance of travel to the UK.
The ETA application process will open on 25 October 2023 only for Qatari nationals who intend to travel to the UK on or after 15 November 2023.
The ETA application process will open on 1 February 2024 only for nationals of Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, United Arab Emirate or Saudi Arabia who intend to travel to the UK on or after 22 February 2024.
If you’re a national of another country you do not need an ETA. More nationalities will be able to apply for ETA later and it will be announced by Home Office in due course.
Who does not need Electronic Travel Authorisation
You do not need an ETA if you have either:
- a visa
- permission to live, work or study in the UK
- a British or Irish passport
An applicant who is lawfully resident in the Republic of Ireland and is travelling to the UK from elsewhere in the Common Travel Area does not need to obtain an ETA.
How much it cost
It costs £10 to apply. Everyone travelling needs to get an ETA, including babies and children. You can apply for other people.
You cannot get a refund after you apply.
How to apply for Electronic Travel Authorisation
The application must be made in accordance with the application process on the gov.uk website using either the mobile application ‘UK ETA’ or the specified online form: ‘Apply for an ETA to come to the UK’
- the passport you’ll travel with – not a photocopy
- access to your emails
- a credit card, debit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay
You’ll need to upload or take photos of the:
- face of the person applying
Reasons for ETA refusal
An application for an ETA must be refused where the applicant:
(a) has been convicted of a criminal offence in the UK or overseas for which they have received a custodial sentence of 12 months or more; or
(b) has been convicted of a criminal offence in the UK or overseas unless more than 12 months have passed since the date of conviction.
An application for an ETA must be refused where the applicant’s presence in the UK is not conducive to the public good because of their conduct, character, associations or other reasons (including convictions which do not fall within the criminality grounds).
An application for an ETA must be refused if, when they were aged 18 or over, the applicant:
(a) overstayed their permission; or
(b) breached a condition attached to their permission, unless entry clearance or further permission was subsequently granted with knowledge of the breach; or
(c) were (or still are) an illegal entrant; or
(d) used deception in relation to an immigration application (whether or not successfully).
An application for an ETA must be refused where, in relation to the current or a previous ETA application:
(a) false representations were made, or false documents or false information was submitted (whether or not relevant to the application, and whether or not to the applicant’s knowledge); or
(b) relevant facts were not disclosed.
ETA validity duration
An ETA will be valid for 2 years from the date of grant or until the expiry of the holder’s passport used in the ETA application, whichever is sooner.