All You Need to Know About the ESTA Visa and Why Travelers to the US Need it

All You Need to Know About the ESTA Visa and Why Travelers to the US Need it | airplane-traveling | News And Opinions

(Sponsored) If you plan on visiting the US for any number of reasons, you are probably going to need a visa. You will also require an ESTA visa, which is a digital visa that stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorization. This shouldn’t be a concern as it is relatively easy to acquire. While the process is pretty straightforward, you still need to familiarize yourself with it in order to properly go about applying for your ESTA. Check out the rest of this piece in order to learn how you can get your own ESTA and become eligible for travel in the US.

Registration process

You apply for an ESTA visa by going to The form you need to fill in is in regards to general information about yourself, which you shouldn’t find difficult to answer. This personal information is then sent over to US authorities which will run your application information against their criminal database.


You will need to pay a few in order to submit your ESTA application, but we’re not talking big bucks. You will need to pay a total of $14 for the application, out of which only $4 cover the actual cost of the application. The other $10 is considered a donation to US Tourism. If your application is rejected, you will be refunded the $10, but the $4 application cost is non-refundable.

How long does it take?

You shouldn’t have to wait too long for your ESTA response to kick in. You can except a response in a matter of seconds from sending out your application, but keep in mind that it might take more than that. The best way to go about it is to prepare for a lengthier response duration, so that you don’t have your plans ruined by this unknown factor. It is known that the maximum waiting time is 48 hours, so it helps to submit your application a few days in advance of leaving for the US.

Can I apply for a friend?

Sure, you are able to submit an application for anyone you like, as long as it contains the correct personal information pertaining to that person. Keep in mind that you can’t send an application for an entire group. It needs to be an individual.


Once you get your ESTA visa, it will be available for a total of two years, time in which you can take multiple trips to the US. It is also worth noting that while you can visit the country multiple time, no visit can last longer than 90 days. This is a long enough periods for a lot of travel purposes, so for the most part you shouldn’t find it difficult to remain within the boundaries of this restriction.

It’s not an instant pass

Keep in mind that while the ESTA says you are eligible to enter the US, it doesn’t act as a definitive and final pass. The last decision resides with the US Customs, which will inspect your case one more time before granting you passage into the United States. Having an ESTA is mandatory and it counts significantly towards you being allowed entry. However, note that US Customs have the power to send you back home, if you give them a reason.

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