Wednesday, November 23, 2016

What is the real objective of ESTA visa?

The US government has Visa Waiver Program for countries that meet its security standards for international travelers. Presently 38 countries are included into the VWP and travelers from these countries enjoy immunity from regular visa for short visits to the US.

Travelers from VWP countries use ESTA application to get visa for short trips. It is quick and free of any hassle as the travelers skip the thorough screening that is cumbersome and frustrating. ESTA is Electronic System for Travel Authorization and it is an online process of getting permission to visit US. Authorization is provided for 90 days and it is valid for two years from the date of issuance or till expiry of passport whichever comes earlier.

There are many misconceptions regarding the electronic visa. Some travelers take the authorization process to be permission to enter the US territory but they are wrong as the electronic system is only a prescreening process. It removes need of thorough screening but it doesn’t mean that the traveler will be allowed to enter the US without going through formal security check. The officials of US Department of Homeland Security can stop anyone from entering into the US, if suspect intention or character of the traveler.


 USA ESTA application is available online on US government website and it can be submitted with a fee of $14. The fee is charged under Travel Promotion Act. Travelers can also find the ESTA form on third-party sites but there they will have to pay more than $14 as the third-party sites charge travelers for service. But never mind paying more as a third-party site will serve you comprehensive information on the electronic visa form.

First thing you should know about electronic visa is the right time to apply for the visa. Though you can apply for electronic authorization before one hour of travel but it is advised that you apply for the visa at least 72 hours before travel. Electronic authorization can be obtained within an hour but it is better to get authorization in advance. In case, your electronic visa application is declined, you will get some time to arrange regular visa.

Care has to be taken while entering details in the ESTA application online. Every detail has to be clear and legible and the most important thing is avoiding cutting and overwriting. You should know what is asked and what to enter. Read the guidelines for application carefully and fill the form with complete peace of mind. Once your application is rejected, you won’t be provided a second chance to apply.

Objective of electronic visa is to make travel a hassle free affair and it is possible only when the travelers follow the procedure. Electronic visa is made available for all the travelers from VWP countries. And it has been mandatory for travelers going on short trips to US. Obtaining electronic visa isn’t a difficult job as the application is easily available on the web and only general information is asked for prescreening of travelers.

1 comment:

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