ESTA for US Travel Set for 50% Price Increase

There have been lots of changes to policies involving travel to the US over the last few years, with Donald Trump driving changes to immigration policies and now the ESTA fee looks set to increase too. The cost of ESTA is set to raise by a staggering 50% in the future, according to recent reports. Therefore, if you were thinking of visiting the US in the near future, it could be a good idea to get your ESTA now, as it stays valid for up to two years (provided your passport stays valid that long).

What is ESTA?

An ESTA stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorization and it is available for citizens of countries that are members of the Visa Waiver Program . The ESTA is a simpler equivalent of getting a visa to visit the US and it was designed to aid business and tourism in the US, whilst still ensuring security screening takes place and any potential risks to the US are managed through the process.

ESTA provides travel authorization for business, tourism, medical and transit purposes in the US. It is a much easier and faster alternative to obtaining a visa, as it requires the completion of an online form instead of attending an interview at the US Embassy, which citizens that are not from VWP countries must do.

One of the key benefits of an ESTA is that is enables travellers to visit the US multiple times using the same ESTA, as long as it is still valid. The ESTA is electronically linked to the applicant’s passport, ready for the border control agents to view on their system.

How to apply for an ESTA?

Firstly, check that you are eligible as a citizen from one of the Visa Waiver Program countries. If you are and you have a valid, biometric passport then you can apply for an ESTA by completing the online form that should take less than 20 minutes to complete. You will need to provide your passport details, as well as fill in personal information and answer some security related questions. You must have a valid email address and a card to make the payment with. Once you have completed the form, you are required to pay your application fee before submitting the form.

Once you have submitted the form, you will get a response via email to inform you whether the application has been approved. Usually, this will take around 24 hours or sometimes even faster. However, it is recommended that you apply for an ESTA at least 72 hours before you plan to travel to the US. This should give you enough time in case there is a delay, or the system is having issues.

It is not yet clear when the potential ESTA application fee increase could come into place but you can save paying the increase of 50% if you get your ESTA now in readiness for US travel plans that you have within the next two years.

US to step up ban on ‘Birth tourism’clock

US to step up ban on ‘Birth tourism’

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus was first reported in China on 31 December, it has claimed the lives of at least 300 people, with over 14,000 people thought to be infected around the world.

Read More...
Court Blocks Trump’s Attempt to Deny US Immigrant Visasclock

Court Blocks Trump’s Attempt to Deny US Immigrant Visas

Donald Trump has introduced a number of changes to the US immigration process since coming into his role as President and the latest change he tried to introduce was to deny visas for immigrants that are unable to afford health care.

Read More...
US to step up ban on ‘Birth tourism’clock

US to step up ban on ‘Birth tourism’

Donald Trump has been busy making lots of changes to the US immigration system over the last few years, in his quest to protect the US with a stricter approach to allowing foreign citizens to enter the US.

Read More...
Good News for Croatian Citizens Visiting the USclock

Good News for Croatian Citizens Visiting the US

When visiting the US, foreign nationals are required to have either a visa, or an ESTA (if they are eligible). The US operates with a strict security process of screening people who are entering the US and the countries that are in the Visa Waiver Program have to pass a set of criteria before they can become members

Read More...
The Huge Impact of the New US Visa Rules in Immigrant Communitiesclock

The Huge Impact of the New US Visa Rules in Immigrant Communities

As Trump’s latest travel ban has been brought into effect, immigration communities are growing increasingly concerned about the impact it will have on being reunited with their families.

Read More...
The Latest Immigration News: Justice Department Takes New Steps to Denaturalize Immigrantsclock

The Latest Immigration News: Justice Department Takes New Steps to Denaturalize Immigrants

The latest in a long list of immigration changes have been rolled out this week, as a new office has been set up with a focus on denaturalization of serious criminals.

Read More...
Trump Bans UK and Ireland Travellers, Whilst UK Government Advises Against Travel to USclock

Trump Bans UK and Ireland Travellers, Whilst UK Government Advises Against Travel to US

Over the last week, there have been some significant changes to how countries are approaching their efforts to fight the coronavirus pandemic. The US last week announced that travellers from many countries in the EU had been banned, including Italy, France and Spain.

Read More...
Trump’s Latest Attacks on Sanctuary Citiesclock

Trump’s Latest Attacks on Sanctuary Cities

It is no secret that Donald Trump has been keen to make it harder for non-US citizens to move to the US, with particular countries targeted for the travel ban.

Read More...
Poland Nominated for Visa Waiver Programclock

Poland Nominated for Visa Waiver Program

There is good news for Polish citizens who want to enjoy an easier process for visiting the US. Currently, any Polish citizen looking to visit the United States must apply for a visa to grant entry permission...

Read More...
US Travel Ban for Europe Excluding UKclock

US Travel Ban for Europe Excluding UK

With the number of coronavirus cases and deaths rising each day in the US, Donald Trump has just announced that all travel from Europe is now banned for 30 days, with the exception of UK and Ireland.

Read More...
Social Media Accounts Now Requested for Visa Applicationsclock

Social Media Accounts Now Requested for Visa Applications

Social media usage is higher than ever and its introduction has changed processes from companies’ marketing campaigns, to following the lifestyles of your avourite celebrity. Given how prominent it is now, it is no surprise that it is being used.

Read More...
72 Hour ESTA Rule Catches Out Travelers to the USclock

72 Hour ESTA Rule Catches Out Travelers to the US

The ESTA system that is available to citizens of the Visa Waiver Program can usually be processed very quickly but there are times when this is not possible. Earlier this year, the US government updated their guidance to state that people traveling to the US should apply at least 72 hours before the departure time.

Read More...
Cypriot Citizens Could Soon Benefit from Joining US Visa Waiver Programclock

Cypriot Citizens Could Soon Benefit from Joining US Visa Waiver Program

The criteria for countries being eligible to join the Visa Waiver Program is regularly reviewed and we have seen with the recent addition of Poland into the VWP and the US government is continually working with other countries to help get to a position where they can join.

Read More...
How Coronavirus Could Affect the Travel and Tourism Industry?clock

How Coronavirus Could Affect the Travel and Tourism Industry?

Cince the Coronavirus first emerged, the travel and tourism industry has been rocked, with hotel lockdowns, travel bans and airlines cancelling flights as different countries have stepped up their measures to try and prevent the spread of the disease.

Read More...
Businesses to Pay the Price for Immigration Fee Hikes in the USclock

Businesses to Pay the Price for Immigration Fee Hikes in the US

Donald Trump promised to introduce stricter immigration policies and he certainly has prioritised this so far in his tenure. His latest proposed rule, His latest proposed rule, as announced by the Department of Homeland Security...

Read More...
Trump’s Immigration Policies Continue to Split Families Apartclock

Trump’s Immigration Policies Continue to Split Families Apart

Donald Trump has been busy making lots of changes to the US immigration policies and travel rules and recently added six countries to his controversial travel ban.

Read More...
Trump outlines plans to expand travel ban to 7 more countriesclock

Trump outlines plans to expand travel ban to 7 more countries

US President Donald Trump has announced that he will add seven more countries to his UStravel ban during an interview this week with the Wall Street Journal. Trump first introduced the controversial ban in 2017, which banned Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

Read More...
Coronavirus: Is It Safe To Travel From The UK To The USA?clock

Coronavirus: Is It Safe To Travel From The UK To The USA?

The news channels have been dominated with updates on the fast-spreading coronavirus and the Government has been quick to react to the outbreak in the UK with an emergency Cobra meeting. Huge sports events have been cancelled, whilst schools affected by the virus have been closed as a precaution and closing more schools...

Read More...