ESTA for Netherlands Citizens -

ESTA for Netherlands Citizens

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The Netherlands has been part of the Visa Waiver Program since 1989, so citizens from the Netherlands are eligible to apply for an ESTA instead of a US visa for visits to the US. The ESTA is available for Netherlands citizens that want to visit the US for a period of less than 90 days, for tourism, business, medical or transit purposes.

ESTA Requirements and Important Information

  • ESTA is for stays of up to 90 days only
  • Required for travellers either flying or arriving by
    sea to the US
  • Applicants must have a valid, biometric passport
  • Valid for two years, or until passport expires (whichever is sooner)
  • ESTA is for tourism, business, medical or transit travel purposes
  • Children must have their own ESTA
  • An ESTA can be used for multiple visits to the US
Application for Netherlands Citizens

How Netherlands Citizens Can Use ESTA

Citizens of the Netherlands can apply for an ESTA as a much quicker alternative to obtaining a US visa. They can travel to the US and visit as many different states as they choose to, as long as their ESTA is valid when they enter the US. Many people who want to take a holiday to the US now apply for an ESTA rather than applying for a US tourist visa. The process is much quicker and easier than applying for a visa through the US Embassy.

Dutch citizens can apply for ESTA using the online form and answering the set of questions that will determine whether their application is accepted. The Department of Homeland Security pre-screen the applicant to check for any risks such as terrorism threats. Issues such as past criminal convictions or medical conditions can also result in the application getting declined.

How to Apply for ESTA

The process for applying for ESTA is very simple, usually taking no more than 20 minutes to provide all of the required information and submitting the application through the online form. The application form has several sections that must be completed, including personal details, passport details and eligibility questions. It is important to check through all of your answers, as even what seems like minor errors can result in your ESTA being declined. Once you have checked through your completed form, the next step is to process your online payment and submit the application.

Most applicants will receive a fast response regarding whether their application is successful, often within just a few hours. However, processing times can vary, especially around busier times like the holiday periods. To avoid any issues travelling to the US, it is advised to submit the application at least 72 hours prior to the intended departure to the US, or even earlier. The ESTA links to the applicant’s passport when it is approved, so border agents in the US will be able to see on their systems that the traveller has a valid ESTA.

Required Documents

Dutch nationals must have the following documentation to be able to apply for an ESTA:

1. Valid passport
2. Debit or credit card to be able to complete the payment
3. Email address

NOTE: Dutch citizens are not required to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond their arrival date - it's just important to be valid during their entire stay.

Additionally, they need to check that their payment card is authorized for online transactions and provide an active email address for receiving notification of ESTA approval. The confirmation will be sent by email without delay.

Passport Requirements for the American ESTA

Strict passport regulations are in place to guarantee the safety and credibility of those who use VWP:

  • To utilize the VWP, all travellers must have an e-passport as of April 1, 2016. An e-Passport is a more secure passport that includes an electronic chip.
  • E-Passports are issued by the appropriate passport authority and must fulfil international requirements for safeguarding and preserving information related to the passport and bearer.
  • Dutch people with emergency passports that lack a chip must apply for a standard Dutch passport.

The US ESTA Application Form for Dutch Nationals

In the ESTA application, a Dutch citizen first will need to provide the following personal information:

  • Full name
  • Home address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Emergency contact name
  • Date of birth
  • Country of birth
  • Citizenship
  • Professional occupation

After personal information, they will have to submit the following passport details:

  • Passport issuance date
  • Passport number
  • Passport expiry date

In the end, they will submit the questionnaire by answering the following health and security questions:

  • Any previous visits or stays in the United States of America
  • Medical history
  • Security background

How Long Does ESTA Approval Take?

ESTA processing time is generally very fast - in most cases, it lasts no more than 24 hours. In some situations, if an additional revision of the application is required, it may take up to 72 hours.

How Much in Advance Should You Apply for an ESTA?

Ideally, you should apply for ESTA once your travel dates are confirmed, or at least 72 hours before departure to avoid any issues. While it's possible to apply at the airport just before your flight, this approach can risk processing delays and unforeseen problems. Therefore, it's recommended to apply well in advance for a stress-free travel experience.

ESTA Validity: How Long Is ESTA Approved For?

From its issuance, ESTA is valid for two years. However, if the traveller's passport expires before two years elapse, ESTA automatically becomes invalid.

Updating Your ESTA: Under What Circumstances Will Dutch Travelers Need a New ESTA?

Dutch nationals must get a new ESTA under the following circumstances:

  • If they change their name or gender
  • If any of the answers to ESTA eligibility questions have changed
  • If their passport expires or when they get a new one

Important Advice for ESTA Application

As well as applying within adequate time before the departure date, it is very important to take extra care when completing the online ESTA application as any errors could stop you from travelling. Spend time to check through your form, cross-referencing passport number and other key details that could cause problems if they are incorrect.

What to do if ESTA is Declined

In some cases, your ESTA could be declined due to an error, in which case you can usually re-apply for the ESTA with the correct details instead. However, if your ESTA has been declined for other reasons, you might be able to apply for a US visa instead. The business or tourist visa can be applied for by completing the DS-160 form and attending an interview at the US Embassy in the Netherlands.

The address of the US Embassy in the Netherlands is:

US Embassy The Hague
John Adams Park 1
2244 BZ Wassenaar

There is also a consulate in Amsterdam.

What Are the Differences Between an ESTA and US Visa?
ESTA Approval
US Visa
Application process
Via online form
Complete the application form + interview at embassy
Approval time
Few hours - 72 hours
15 - 30 days
Travel duration
90 days
180 days
Suitable for
Tourist, business, or transits purpose
College students
In What Cases Dutch Nationals Can’t Use the VWP(ESTA) and Need a Visa Instead?

Dutch nationals require a visa rather than an ESTA to travel to America if:

  • The ESTA application has been refused.
  • They have previously overstayed their 90-day ESTA in the United States.
  • They have dual nationality from the Netherlands and Iraq, Iran, Syria, and North Korea.
  • They do not have a picture e-passport.
  • They have been arrested in the past or have a criminal record.
Do Dutch Dual Citizens of the United States or Canada Need an ESTA?

Dual nationals of the United States or Canada do not need an ESTA. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) suggests that visitors use their American or Canadian passports when visiting the USA.

USA ESTA for Children

Kids must possess their very own ESTA to go to America. Legal guardians or parents have the opportunity to apply on behalf of their child using the same application method as applied when filing for their own prerequisites. If there is more than one child travelling together, guardians and parents can submit a group application encompassing the entire family.

Can I Apply for My Family or Friends?

Yes, it is possible to apply for your family and friends. This will make the application process faster. When applying, you must provide a different email address for each traveller. Once approved, the ESTA visa will be sent to each individual's email address.

Benefits of ESTA for Dutch citizens:
  • Speedy processing
  • Used for visits to US for tourism, business, medical or transit
  • For trips of up to 90 days
  • Quick to complete application form
  • Complete the form using either mobile or desktop
  • Can be used for multiple visits to US
Learn More About ESTA

Read more about the ESTA requirements and check out our FAQ section for further information before beginning your application.

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, Netherlands citizens can travel to the USA without a visa. Instead, they can use ESTA, which allows staying for up to 90 days and can be used for tourist, medical, business and transit purposes.
Yes, you can travel to the USA with a Dutch residence permit, but you must have an appropriate visa or ESTA. ESTA allows stays that do not exceed 90 days, while with a visa you can stay for a longer period of time. Also, ESTA can be used only for tourists, medical, business and transit purposes.