What is ESTA USA?
ESTA stands for “Electronic System for Travel Authorization” . The “Electronic Entry Permit System” has provided uncomplicated travel of up to 90 days to the United States since 2008 without the use of the authorities by the Consulate General or the Embassy. ESTA (ESTA USA) is an online registration system that determines if individuals are eligible for a trip to Unated States under the Visa Waiver Program ( VWP ). Applicants must be citizens of a participating state.
All travelers that are entering the US by air or sea under the visa waiver program are required to hold ESTA travel authorization. The purpose of ESTA USA is to allow the US Department of Homeland Security to pre-screen all Visa Waiver Travelers before they leave their respective countries.
MyESTA helps travelers to USA to prepare and fill their ESTA Application. We make the process perfectly easy, entirely online and our trained agents will help you with any doubds you may have.
Entering the US without a visa – the easiest way
When you start a travel you should always be prepared, whether on just a trip ot vacation. Especially when it comes to visiting country abroud and this country is the US. For sure you have all the necessary documents ready, also first-aid kit and additional errands. Keep in mind that on entry in the US, an entry permit must still be considered.
In many cases a visa is no longer necessary. That’s where the ESTA comes in. Find out exactly what an ESTA permit is and who can use it on our website.
Requirements to submit an ESTA Application
- You plan to enter the US for 90 days or less – for business, pleasure or transit
- You have a valid passport legally issued by a Visa Waiver Program country
- You arrive holding Visa Waiver Program signatory carrier
- Have an onward or return ticket
- The journey does not end in neighboring territory or adjacent islands unless the passenger is a resident of one of these areas
- Being identified by the inspecting United States Customs and Border Protection officer that you are eligible for admission to the Visa Waiver Program and that you are not inadmissible under the Immigration and Nationality Act.
- To waive any right to review or appeal against the admissibility decision of the United States Customs and Border Control Officer, or to challenge, with the exception of the application for asylum, any corrective action arising from an application for admission to a visa-free regime.
- Confirm by submitting biometric identifiers (including fingerprints and photos) during processing upon your arrival in the United States, the revocation of any rights of review or appeal against the admissibility of the United States Customs and Border Protection or Competition on the basis of an application for asylum, any removal action arising from an application for admission under the Visa Waiver Program.
- Does not pose a threat to the safety, health, welfare or security of the United States.
- Complied with all the conditions for any prior acceptance under the Visa Waiver Program.
Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ
What is the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA)?
ESTA is an automated system that determines whether visitors can be allowed to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). ESTA can not determine whether the passenger is eligible for the US or not. This is determined by US Customs and Border Service officers when passengers arrive. Biographical data and responses to VWP eligibility issues need to be collected. Applications for ESTA can be submitted at any time before the trip, but it is recommended to do so immediately before the trip or before purchasing airline tickets.
What is the difference between a visa and an ESTA?
An Approved Travel Authorization is not a Visa. ESTA does not meet the USA statutory or regulatory requirements. The visa is a document subject to other provisions of United States legislation. Persons who travel with valid visas are not required to apply for a travel authorization.
Do I need to apply for ESTA?
If you are a citizen of a Visa Waiver Program country, and you are traveling to the United States by land, then you do not need ESTA. You have to apply for ESTA If you are coming to the USA by sea or air. In case you are not a citizen of a Visa Waiver Program country, ESTA does not apply for you – you are required to have a visa.
Why the US requires ESTA?
In order to ehnance the security on the Visa Waiver Program, Immigration and Nationality Act requires it. This is just one of several measures that are taken to ehnance security requirement.
Do I need ESTA if I’m only passing through the United States en route in a way to another country?
When you are completing the travel authorization application in ESTA, you should select “Yes” to “Is your travel to the US occurring in transit to another country?”. Citizens of countries that participate in the Visa Waiver Program are required to hold travel authorization or visa to transit the United States.
If I was denied a visa to the US. Can I apply for ESTA?
If you have ever been denied a visa you cannot apply for ESTA.
I am located in Canada or Mexico and plan to drive to the USA, do I need ESTA?
No. If you are a citizen of a Visa Waiver Program country and you want to enter by land from Canada or Mexico you don`t need ESTA. You will be required to complete the paper I-94W form and proceed through a manual entry process at the land border crossing. In case you have ESTA you wont need to complete I-94W form.
I want to find information about the Terrorist Travel Prevention Act (The Act)?
Please visit https://www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/visa-waiver-program/visa-waiver-program-improvement-and-terrorist-travel-prevention-act-faq in order to find more information about The Act.
How many days in advance is it recommended to apply for an ESTA?
At least 72 hours (3 days). If your travel is planned in advance it is better to apply as early as possible. If your ESTA is denied you will have to apply for a regular or visitor visa at a US embassy or consulate. Sometimes it is difficult to attain, so you may need weeks.
How long does the ESTA application process take?
Approximately 15 to 20 minutes. In case you have all the needed information prepared it may be shorter.
How long does it takes to be approved?
Often the application status is updated immediately. In some cases additional time is required and the status update may take up to 72 hours. You may see 3 different status messages: Authorization Approved, Travel Not Authorized and Authorization Pending.
My passport information has expired ot changed. What should I do?
In this case you must apply for a new travel authorization and pay the associated fees. There are cases where you can update/change information after submission of your application. Before submitting your application you can update any information except the passport issuing country and passport number. After your application approved you can change/update only Email address and Address in the U.S fields.