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I am travelling to or through the United States. Do I need a Visa?

This is a guide only, you are responsible for checking visa requirements for the countires visited and for obtaining the visa. We are no longer allowed to advise on visa requirements, please check with your embassy.

If you are a UK passport holder, the chances are you do not need a visa, though you must complete the following immigration procedure at least 72 hours before you fly.

Those travelling on a UK passport need to have valid ESTA clearance (Electronic System for Travel Authorization)  to travel to the United States. You may have a valid application from a previous trip. As long as your details (such as your passport number) do not change, an ESTA is valid for two years from the date of issue.

If you need to apply for your first or a new ESTA, follow this link to ensure that you reach the official website:


You will need to pay a nominal fee to apply.

Please note: you will not receive any emails confirming your ESTA status. It is recommended that you take a note of the long authorization number when it is presented to you

Often, the ESTA is approved instantly. On occasions, it may be listed as "Authorization Pending" . If this is the case, you may wish to check on the status again at a later time. Approvals can take upto 72 hours.

If your authorization is declined, we recommend that you  contact the US Embassy as it is likely you will have to arrange for a visa to travel.

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