Electronic Travel Authorization UK: Complete guide

A Step-By-Step Guide to ETA Application

The UK Home Office has a new rule for travelers from certain countries, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, as well as nationals of Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, and Oman. If you're from these countries and planning a trip to the UK, you'll need to get an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA). 

This rule starts from 15 November 2023. The ETA grants you permission to travel to the UK; it does not function as a visa waiver.  Here, we provide detailed guidance on how to secure an ETA, coupled with essential insights to facilitate a seamless journey to the UK.


Understanding the Electronic Travel Authorization UK Requirement

To visit the UK for business, a holiday, or a short stay, you will need to apply for an ETA. The process to get this permission to travel is simple and online. Remember, even if you are traveling without a visa, you will still require an ETA. 

It is important to apply for it before 15 November 2023 to enjoy uninterrupted travel to the UK, including short stays. Let us guide you step-by-step to successfully obtain your ETA with no complications.

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How to Apply for an ETA: The Initial Steps

Embarking on the ETA application process is straightforward. You are urged to apply for an ETA well in advance before your planned journey to avoid any potential delays. The Home Office has streamlined the application process, which can be completed online, ensuring a hassle-free experience.

  1. Start Early: Given the influx of applications, starting early is advised. The applications will open from 25 October 2023.
  2. Gather Necessary Documents: Assemble all the required documents, including your passport and details of your stay.
  3. Complete the Application: Visit the official website to complete your electronic travel authorisation ETA application.


Details to Note Before Arrival in the UK

Before setting foot in the UK, there are several details to note to ensure a smooth entry:

  1. ETA Validation Period: Once granted, your ETA will remain valid from 15 November 2023 till 22 February 2024.
  2. Permission to Enter: While ETA grants you permission to travel, it does not guarantee entry. The UK border force holds the right to grant or deny permission to enter the UK.
  3. Visa Waiver: If you are travelling under a visa waiver programme, possessing an ETA is still mandatory.


What to Expect Upon Arrival in the UK

Once you arrive in the UK, you are subject to the usual border control checks. The authorities will verify your documents and the purpose of your visit. Maintaining transparency and having all the necessary documents will facilitate a quicker process.

  1. Border Check: Be prepared for a meticulous check at the UK border to verify your credentials and purpose of visit.
  2. Entry Denial: Bear in mind that the authorities reserve the right to deny entry even with a valid ETA.


Tips for a Smooth ETA Application Process

To ensure a smooth application process and successful entry into the UK, here are some tips to help you prepare:

  1. Recheck All Details: Before submission, double-check all the details in your application to avoid any errors.
  2. Follow the Guidelines: Adhere strictly to all the guidelines provided by the Home Office during your application process.
  3. Timely Application: Aim to complete your ETA application well before your travel date to allow time for processing.



The electronic travel authorization UK is a pivotal step for travellers from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and nationals of Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, and Oman, aiming for a hassle-free entry into the UK. Commencing on 15 November 2023, it is designed to fortify the security measures and facilitate a smooth entry for travellers with a legitimate reason for their visit.

Ensure to begin your application process on or after 25 October 2023, bearing in mind the crucial role this authorization plays in granting you the initial permission to travel. With diligent adherence to the guidelines laid down by the Home Office, you can look forward to a seamless entry process and a pleasant stay in the UK. Remember, an ETA does not supersede the visa requirements; it is a prerequisite to travel to the UK, including short stays or transits, ensuring a fortified security measure at the UK border.