ESTA for Spanish Citizens
Spain joined the Visa Waiver Program in 1991, entitling citizens of Spain to be able to apply for an ESTA when it was introduced. This makes it a lot easier for Spanish citizens to visit the US for business, tourism, transit or medical purposes.
ESTA Requirements and Important Information
- Links to a biometric passport electronically
- Only for visits to US that are a maximum of 90 days
- Stays valid for two years, or until passport expires
- Use for tourism, business, medical or transit in the US
- The same ESTA can be used for numerous visits to US
- ESTA can be used as authorization for people flying or sailing to US
- All children require their own individual ESTA
Benefits of Applying for ESTA for Spanish Citizens
Citizens of Spain are eligible to apply for an ESTA, saving them time and money when compared to a US visa. The ESTA is a short online form that applicants can complete in less than 20 minutes and usually receives a response within 24 hours. Applicants are advised to apply at least 72 hours before they travel to US to take into account for any delays.
Another great advantage for Spanish citizens by applying for an ESTA is that it stays valid for two years and in that time they are able to use it to visit the US as many times as they wish. The only restriction is that they do not overstay the 90 days limit.
One more benefit of using an ESTA rather than a visa is that the application fee is considerably less than when applying for a visa. An ESTA application is completed online, whilst a visa requires a visit to the US Embassy for an interview.
How Spanish Citizens Can Apply for ESTA
To apply for an ESTA, Spanish citizens require a biometric passport, a valid email address and a way of paying for their application fee i.e. a payment card. The applicant will need to complete details from their passport when they fill in the questions on the online form. Other questions include name, address, DOB, as well as some health related questions and criminal convictions.
The Department of Homeland Security screens each applicant to determine whether they are deemed to be a security risk and then a decision will be made. The applicant will receive an email to inform them of the decision. If the ESTA is approved then it links electronically to the passport.
What to do if ESTA is Declined
If the email informs that the application has been declined, it could be due to a mistake on the application. If that is the reason, then the applicant is able to send a second application with the correct details but will also need to pay the application fee again.
If the ESTA refusal was not due to an error, then the alternative for the applicant is to try applying for a visa instead, by attending the US Embassy for an interview.
US Embassy for Spanish Citizens
U.S. Embassy Madrid Calle de Serrano, 75 28006 Madrid, Spain
Benefits of ESTA for Spanish citizens:
- Quick to process the ESTA
- Use for US visits of up to 90 days
- Can use same ESTA to visit US multiple times
- For business, tourism, medical or transit
- Application form is short and fast to fill in
- You can apply via mobile or desktop