The USA ESTA or Electronic System for Travel Authorization is a travel document that you need to get when traveling to the USA. This is a requirement for nationals of countries on the Visa Waiver program only as all other nationals will need to get a visa to enter the United States. There are a number of facts that you need to know about the USA ESTA if you are thinking of traveling to the US.
You Must Have A USA ESTA
You need to have an approved ESTA if you want to travel to the US because without one you are unlikely to be allowed to board the plane. The ESTA is also necessary if you are stopping in transit in the US. If you are unsure about whether or not you need an ESTA then you need to consider if your plane is going to land in the US because if it is then you need to have one.
You Fill Out The Application Online
The ESTA application is completely online and will need to be completed through the official Department of Homeland Security website. When you complete the application you need to take note of the reference number that you are given and keep it somewhere safe. It is recommended that you print the authorization page if your ESTA application is approved and take it with you when you travel.
It Costs $14
The application will cost $14 to complete and this will be payable upon submission of the online application. You will need to pay the fee with a credit card, but it is important that you look at the card used. If you do not use the correct card you could be charged a foreign exchange load fee which will increase the costs of the application.
Be Aware Of Fraud Sites
When you Google ESTA you will notice that there are a lot of sites that pretend to be the official ESTA website. There are also other websites that offer to complete the application for you for an additional fee. You need to stay away from these sites are they are scams and you always need to complete the application yourself.
The ESTA Is Valid For 2 Years
Once your application has been approved your ESTA will be valid for 2 years or until the passport you used in the application expires. If you are issued a new passport you will need to apply for a new ESTA. If your ESTA is still valid then you will be able to travel to the US without reapplying.