ESTA FAQ: Questions and answers concerning the application

Do you have questions concerning your ESTA application? In our FAQ you will find all the most commonly asked questions by people wishing to travel to the United States, together with the answers in detail.  

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Who does the ESTA system concern?

The ESTA system was implemented for all citizens of the system member countries that hold a valid passport and wish to travel to American territory for a stay of less than 90 days, or transit through or take a stopover on American territory. Children are also required to have this authorisation. This ESTA application process, even though greatly simplified, may still give rise to various questions and certain people may need assistance with completing this application.

 

What are the necessary conditions for obtaining your ESTA:

The ESTA system is reserved only for certain visitors; these are people who fulfil the following conditions:

  • Hold a biometric or electronic passport that is valid for the entirety of the planned visit.
  • Plan a visit to the USA for a period of no longer than 90 days, including transfers and stopovers.
  • You should be a resident of one of the ESTA system member countries.
  • You have not been refused with a previous application or visa application.

If you fulfil all these conditions then you are eligible to create your ESTA application online, although this does not necessarily mean that your application will be automatically accepted.

 

When to apply for an ESTA?

Taking into account the processing period of 72 hours for your application and the possibility of a refusal necessitating a renewal of your application, we would strongly recommend that you complete and submit the form at least two weeks before your departure date.

 

How long does it take to process an ESTA application?

The processing period for an ESTA application by the American authorities is around 72 hours after the validation of your online form. The notification of acceptance or refusal of your travel authorisation will be sent to you by email at the address specified on the questionnaire.

 

How long is an ESTA authorisation valid for?

Once obtained, an ESTA authorisation is valid for two years. This means that you can use it for all your future trips of less than 90 days to the USA, on the condition that your personal situation has not changed.

 

How much does an ESTA application cost?

An ESTA application completed through our website will cost you €55 for administrative costs and processing including all taxes required by the American authorities. This amount will have to be paid using a credit card to validate your online application.

 

Which documents are required to complete an ESTA application?

To complete your online ESTA application, you simply need to ensure you have your biometric or electronic passport at hand that you will use for your travel to the United States.

 

Should the ESTA authorisation be printed?

As the ESTA travel authorisation is an electronic system it is not necessary to print this document as the authorities concerned will be automatically notified of the acceptance of your application. However we do recommend that you keep a safe note of your reference number for future trips or to make any necessary modifications.

 

What should be done in the case of refusal?

If your travel authorisation application is refused, you can make another application after 10 days possibly correcting any errors or making any required modifications to your application, or as necessary, completing a traditional visa application through the normal consular or embassy channels.

 

What are the reasons for ESTA refusal?

The American authorities are the sole decision makers concerning the acceptance or refusal of your application. The principal reasons for refusal are: A criminal record, a stay of over 90 days, a preceding refusal, erroneous personal information.

 

Assistance in the case of refusal of your ESTA application:

In the situation whereby your ESTA application is refused by the American authorities, you have two possibilities open to you:

  • Reapplying for your ESTA at least ten days after the initial refusal, checking carefully the accuracy of your information.
  • Complete a traditional visa application by visiting an American consulate or embassy in your country and supplying the necessary documents.

In all cases, a negative response to your ESTA application does not mean that you can never obtain this authorisation.

 

Is it possible to modify an ESTA application?

You can, at any time, using your reference number, make modifications to your travel authorisation application.

 

Access the ESTA application form available online through our website.

  1. Complete the form taking time to respond to all the questions asked and checking the accuracy of your answers carefully.
  2. Validate the form by using your credit card to make the payment for the processing fees and transmission costs.
  3. Wait to receive the response from the American authorities by email within a period of 72 hours maximum.

Completing the ESTA application form does not necessarily require an extremely high level of English. In fact, on our website you will find the questionnaire translated into your language to ensure you clearly understand each question that is asked.

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