ESTA for Italian Citizens -

ESTA for Italian Citizens

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Italy joined the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) in 1989, meaning that Italian citizens have been able to apply for an ESTA instead of a US visa since the ESTA was introduced. The process of applying for an ESTA is much simpler than applying for a visa, which is one of the many benefits for citizens of Italy.

ESTA Requirements and Important Information

  • Restricted to citizens or eligible nationals of a Visa Waiver Program country
  • Can be used for tourism, business, medical or transit purposes
  • Restricted to US visits of up to 90 days in total
  • Requires a valid, biometric passport
  • Issued for two years, or until the passport expires
  • Children must have their own ESTA
  • Can be used for multiple visits to the US
  • Required for travellers who are flying or arriving by sea to the US
Application for Italian Citizens

Benefits of Applying for ESTA for Italian Citizens

Italian citizens can visit the US using the ESTA (Electronic system for travel authorisation), saving time and money compared to the process of applying for a visa. Citizens from countries that are not members of the VWP have to pay a higher application fee for a visa and also need to attend an interview at the US Embassy.

When citizens of Italy apply for an ESTA, the online form takes less than 20 minutes to complete and the processing time will usually be less than 72 hours, often much less. You receive the response regarding the status of your ESTA by email, so the whole process is done electronically with no need to travel to an Embassy, or post documents etc.

One of the additional great advantages of obtaining an ESTA is that you are able to use it for multiple trips to the US during its validity. When an ESTA is approved it will be valid for two years, unless your passport expires before that. If your passport expires, you would need to apply for a new ESTA to link to your new passport, you cannot transfer your existing ESTA onto a new passport.

How Italian Citizens Can Apply for ESTA

The application process is simple, citizens from Italy just need an e-passport, email address, and a card for payment of the application fee. The form requires the completion of information such as name, address, date of birth, as well as medical questions and criminal records. The Department of Homeland Security sscreens each traveller entering the US to determine whether they pose a security risk and the ESTA forms part of that process.

Once the form has been filled in, it is important that the applicant carefully checks all of the information that they have provided. If there is an error on the form, this is likely to lead to the application getting declined, which could affect the applicant’s travel plans.

What Do I Need to Apply?

  • Valid passport(s) issued by a country that participates in the Visa Waiver Program;
  • The traveler's valid email address;
  • The traveler's home address and phone number;

Additionally, some of the following information might be needed:

  • Aliases that travelers use;
  • National ID or personal identification number of the passenger;
  • The traveler's employer's phone number and address;
  • Name, phone number, and email address of the traveler's U.S. contact;
  • The passenger's Global Entry ID number;

When to Apply for ESTA?

Users must apply for an ESTA authorisation online and receive it at least 72 hours before travel.

Anyone wishing to travel using an ESTA is advised to obtain one as soon as possible because if they are denied, their alternative is to apply for a nonimmigrant visa, which can be a very time-consuming process.

ESTA Renewal

No, there is no option to renew ESTA after expiry, so the user will have to submit a new application for it.

What to do if ESTA is Declined

If the ESTA has been declined because you made a mistake when completing it, then you may be able to re-apply for an ESTA with the correct details, paying the application fee again. If the ESTA application is declined for another reason then you could apply for a US visa instead, but will need to attend an interview at the US Embassy. You will also need to complete a DS-160 form and pay the visa application fee.

The US Embassy address in Italy is:

U.S. Embassy Rome
via Vittorio Veneto 121
00187 Roma

Updating Your ESTA: How Long Is an ESTA Valid for?

The ESTA is valid for 2 years and during that period the user can enter the USA an unlimited number of times, with the fact that each visit must not be longer than 90 days.

A person must acquire a new Esta if they change their name; receive a new passport, including an emergency or temporary passport; change their gender; change their country or citizenship; or change their responses to any of the "yes" or "no" questions on the ESTA application.

Benefits of ESTA for Italian citizens:

  • Quick processing time
  • Use for US visits for tourism, business, medical or transit
  • Valid for trips to US of up to 90 days
  • Application is fast to complete
  • Fill in form via mobile or desktop
  • Use for multiple visits to US

When Should Italian Citizens Apply for a Visa Rather Than an ESTA?

Here are the situations in which Italian citizens should apply for a visa rather than an ESTA:

  • If their ESTA request is refused;
  • In the past, they have overstayed their visa or ESTA;
  • They lack a valid electronic passport;
  • They intend to stay for more than 90 days;
  • They plan a travel to the United States of America for work or school;

Who Is Ineligible for an ESTA?

There's a chance that some tourists won't be eligible for the VWP's visa-free access to the US. These include:

  • people who have been arrested (even if the arrest did not end in a criminal conviction)
  • people who have a criminal record (even if they are eligible for a pardon, amnesty, or other clemency)
  • people who have certain dangerous infectious diseases
  • people who have been refused entry to the US or who have been expelled from the US
  • anyone who has previously overstayed their visa waiver program

As on or after March 1, 2011, those who visited or were physically present in Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, or Yemen are ineligible to travel under the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 (with limited exceptions for travel for diplomatic or military purposes in support of a VWP country).

Written by Abisola Fikayomi

Abisola is an accomplished writer interested in US Travel, immigration, passports and visas. She’s passionate about exploring new places and cultures and willing to share her experiences, expertize and findings with others. That is her primary drive for specialising in this industry.


Yes, Italian citizens who wish to visit America for a period of fewer than 90 days need an ESTA.
Yes, Italy is one of the VWP countries and its citizens can visit the United States without a visa using only ESTA (if ESTA eligible).
A person who enters the nation through the Visa Waiver Program is not permitted to stay any longer than the initial term of admission and must leave the nation by the deadline noted on their entry stamp.