The United States’ entry requirement for foreign nationals has recently been updated. The new policy requires that all visitors coming into the country must have an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) before they can enter the country by air or sea.
The ESTA application process became mandatory in January, 2020. In order to obtain a valid ESTA, you will need to apply for one online through the official website of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security or through your local U.S. Customs and Border Protection office.
In this guide, we explain everything that you need to know about applying for the ESTA. We also provide information on how to get it done as quickly as possible. So, if you want to travel to the United States without having to spend hours filling out forms and waiting for approval, keep reading!
How to apply for an ESTA
To get an ESTA online, you will need to create a profile on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) website. If you already have a U.S. passport, you will find that creating your profile takes just a few minutes. However, if you are traveling from another country, you will have to fill out additional pages.
The first step is to select whether you’re planning to fly or travel by car, train, bus, boat, or ship. Then, select “Traveling for business?” to continue with the other questions.
Here, you will be asked to provide your full name, email address used to log into social media accounts, date of birth, and phone number. You can also check the box next to “I am not a citizen or national of the U.S., Canada, Mexico, or Bermuda.” This means that you will be able to enter the U.S. even though you do not have a visa. After answering these basic questions, you will then be taken to the next screen where you can answer further questions pertaining to your travel plans.
You will be required to provide a little more detail here. For example, you will need to choose one of the following options:
- Planning to visit friends/family only.
- Visiting friends/family and sightseeing.
- Visiting friends/family and conducting business activities.
- Visiting friends/family and participating in organized sporting events.
- Visiting friends/family and participating in organized recreational activities.
- Participating in organized cultural, educational, or religious activities.
- Visiting friends/family and visiting family.
- Participating in organized religious activities.
- Participating in organized humanitarian aid activities to meet immediate needs.
- Participating in organized volunteerism or service projects.
- Participating in organized political, civic, or community service activities.
- Participating in organized professional conferences or training.
- Participating in organized entertainment activities or recreation.
- Participating in organized athletic competitions or exhibitions.
There are many reasons why someone would like to visit the United States. To help you decide which option best fits your situation, there is a list of factors that you should consider when selecting one of the above entries.
Number of days.
Duration of visits.
Whether you plan to stay overnight.
If you plan to return to your home country after your trip.
If you plan to visit relatives.
Whether you plan to take part in organized activity while you are in the U.S.
Your intended purpose and length of stay.
After choosing an option, you will then be asked to state your reason for visiting the U.S. If you are traveling to attend a conference, you will be asked what type of conference it is.
Next, you will be asked to provide details about your itinerary. Be sure to include the dates, places, and duration of your planned trips. Finally, you will be asked to provide information regarding any pets or animals that you may bring with you. This includes dogs, cats, and birds. When you click submit at the end of the form, you will receive an official confirmation letter via email.
If you applied online, you will also be notified via email once you’ve received your ESTA. However, if you submitted your ESTA request in person at a border inspection facility, you will also receive an official confirmation letter at the time of submission.
It is important to note that the ESTA does expire. However, you can easily renew your ESTA online every 90 days. Therefore, you should ensure that you apply for your ESTA well ahead of your anticipated travel date to avoid delays due to expired credentials.
Note: The ESTA is valid for up to two years for non-U.S. citizens and permanent residents of the U.S. However, it can only be renewed twice. Therefore, you should apply for your ESTA soon after receiving it the first time.
Are you planning to apply for the esta? If yes then these are some steps that will help you in achieving the goals. Having the complete idea of the form will help in the easy completion of the form. The people will get the complete idea and achieve the goals. A person should know as what are the use and the benefit of the esta from.
While completing the ESTA, you may encounter some unexpected questions such as:
- Will I be asked to present my passport during the arrival screening?
- Can I skip the arrival screening?
- Do I need to complete the ESTA form again if I change my flight?