The Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) was implemented in 2010 to replace the historic visa system. Since then, ESTA allows travelers to visit the US for business or tourism purposes for no longer than 90 days. However, only residents of countries listed under the Visa Waiver System are eligible for this authorization. If you are one, here are the steps on how to apply for an ESTA.
Step 1: Visit the official ESTA website
The official website is at https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov. Make sure to only apply through this site. Other fraudulent ones can put your personal data risks and take your money without getting the service that you pay for.
Step 2: Fill up the ESTA Form
The first part of the ESTA form contains your personal and travel details. You will be required to put in your name, address, date of birth, contact number, employment history, and parent’s information.
You will be asked to provide information about your travel plans, which includes the address of the place you will be staying and other details such as your passport and emergency contact information.
Lastly, you will be prompted to give details about any criminal conviction, medical history, and other sets of questions that will identify if you pass the qualification to travel to the US.
Step 3: Check and Confirm Your Information
It is crucial to recheck the form and confirm that all given details are correct. Remember, any mistake or error can negatively affect your application. Once rejected, it is tough to undo the denial, and it will take time to re-apply. To avoid a decline and unnecessary delays, take time, and complete the form carefully.
Step 4: Select your Payment Method and Pay
You can select from several options to pay the required fee. Make sure to choose the most convenient for you. Input your payments details to proceed in paying the charge and then, continue in submitting your ESTA application. A response will be sent to your email within 24 hours after the transaction.
If in case your esta application gets rejected, you can always check the website for the set of FAQs and answer any of your questions. If you get approved, your ESTA authorization will be valid for two years. The esta can cover multiple trips long as you are within the validity period and given that your passport isn’t expired.