ESTA online form
You are planning to travel to the United States in the near future and would like to obtain your ESTA form as soon as possible.
To complete your ESTA form, simply click on the online form in English.
COVID19 health crisis: European nationals allowed to travel to the US
The United States has ended the “Travel ban” for European nationals since November 8, 2021. Since this date, travelers can again enter the United States, but certain restrictions have also been put in place to protect the American population in the context of the health crisis.
Until June 2022, foreign travelers were required to have a negative COVID-19 test within the last 72 hours before departure to board a plane to the United States. As of July 2022, it is no longer necessary to present a negative COVID test when boarding a plane to the USA.
In order to enter the United States, European travelers must now present before boarding:
- A complete vaccination certificate for more than 15 days;
- A valid electronic or biometric passport;
- A valid ESTA ;
What is the ESTA form?
Since 2009, it has been mandatory for business and leisure travelers to fill out an ESTA form before considering a trip to the United States.
This is a web-only form. It is operated by the U.S. Department of State and allows Border Patrol to collect information on travelers prior to their arrival in the United States.
The information collected is actively involved in the security of the country and helps to screen passengers before they are allowed to enter the United States. This approach is essential for the U.S. government in the context of the country’s internal security.
Who is the ESTA form for?
The ESTA form is for nationals of countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) established by the United States in 2009.
The form is individual and mandatory, you must check your eligibility for the ESTA because it does not concern everyone. In the case of group travel, a form must be completed for each traveler, regardless of age. A complete and dedicated individual form must be completed for each minor.
Travelers must be in the U.S. for tourism or business, and stay for a maximum of 90 days during the 2-year validity of the ESTA authorization.
How do I get the ESTA form?
The ESTA form is only available on the Internet. The form must be filled out online to obtain an ESTA. It cannot be printed out to be completed in writing. It is therefore necessary to use a computer equipped with an Internet connection and an Internet browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, etc.).
The official ESTA website presents the form that must be filled out to be submitted to the American authorities. The site is protected and has an up-to-date SSL certificate. This protection allows you to enter your payment information securely online during the validation of the form.
When to fill out the ESTA form?
The U.S. authorities recommend that you apply for ESTA at least 72 hours before your planned departure date to the United States. Filling out the form takes at least a few minutes. It can also take several hours if you don’t have all the available information ready. There are about ten screens with different information themes to fill in, including passport information, employment, travel and local contact information.
Documents required to complete the ESTA form
In order to complete your ESTA declaration online, you must provide certain documents and information. The rules for obtaining the ESTA must be respected.
The documents required to complete the form are:
- Your passport;
- Information about your current or past employment, and your employer;
- Your airplane tickets and voucher for accommodation on site;
- Contact information in the USA
How to fill out the ESTA form?
Filling out the ESTA form on the Internet is a process that includes about ten successive screens to be completed and validated.
Filling out an ESTA form is not a trivial step in a traveler’s journey. The U.S. Embassy emphasizes the importance of providing truthful and accurate information when completing online applications and obtaining travel authorizations.
Particular attention should be paid to the copy of the passport number to ensure a smooth arrival in the United States at customs.
The steps to complete the ESTA form are :
- Go to the official website
- Validate access to the form
- Acceptance of waivers and terms and conditions
- Fill in the applicant’s data
- Check your e-mail address on the form
- Fill in the personal identity information
- Fill in the travel information
- Answer the eligibility questions
- Review your application
- Pay the mandatory US taxes by credit card.
We have described these steps in detail and illustrated them with screenshots from the official website in our dedicated page: filling out the ESTA form.
How much does the ESTA form cost?
There is no such thing as free ESTA authorization. To validate the ESTA form, the applicant must pay at least the ESTA fee. These fees and U.S. taxes are a minimum of $21. They include at a minimum:
- 4 for the processing fee;
- 17 for the authorization fee.
Payment must be made online by credit card. The applicant fills in their payment card information and submits the payment. The payment is validated or refused in a few seconds.
The ESTA form fee is administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
How long does it take to process the ESTA form?
Once the payment is made, the form is validated. The ESTA processing time starts at this point. The processing is a fast computer process, which takes only a few seconds.
The response from the form processing system is sent to the applicant by e-mail within a few minutes to a few days. The U.S. administration has a maximum of 72 hours to respond to the applicant. To respect the deadlines, the applicant must make his request at the latest 3 days before his departure.
When do I have to renew the ESTA form?
Sometimes you wonder when you should apply for ESTA. After 2 years, the ESTA form must be renewed. This renewal must take place earlier in certain cases which are listed below:
- If you change your passport;
- When your marital status changes, for example if you change your name or gender;
- When you change your citizenship;
- if you have been convicted or a change in your life causes you to change your answers to the eligibility questions on the ESTA form
In all these situations you will need to renew your ESTA form. Renewing the form is the same as filling out a new form on the website.
What are the limitations of the ESTA form?
Filling out the form does not guarantee your entry into the United States. An ESTA and customs clearance are two different things. The final decision is made by a customs officer following your interview upon arrival in the USA. The sincere and complete completion of the form is not a guarantee of entry into the United States. The mandatory formalities are common to all travelers regardless of the mode of transportation. In the specific case of entry into the USA by land, it is also necessary to be in possession of an ESTA.
Image of the ESTA form
By respecting the ESTA procedure, you will maximize your chances of success and will be able to plan your departure for the United States with complete peace of mind. You can read our FAQ on ESTA questions for more information.