How to obtain an ESTA electronic travel authorization for the USA

ESTA, Electronic System for Travel Authorization, is an electronic travel authorization system for the United States. This system was put in place to enhance the security of travel to the United States. The ESTA travel authorization for the USA is granted to any person from a country that benefits from the Visa Waiver Program and whose travel for tourism, business or transit lasts no longer than 90 days. As France benefits from the Visa Waiver Program, French nationals will not need to apply for a visa for these types of stays. All you have to do is fill out an ESTA authorization form online, in French. We explain the ESTA form, the information you need to enter and how to change your ESTA information United States.

Can I fill out the ESTA form to go to the United States?

If you are a citizen of one of the countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), it is probably possible for you to apply for an ESTA. Here is the list of countries concerned: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and Taiwan.

It is mandatory to have a biometric or electronic passport before applying online.

In addition, you must leave for a tourist, business or transit stay for a maximum of 90 days on American soil. It is strictly forbidden by the American authorities to stay longer on American soil, you will be in the illegal by committing this act. If you wish to stay longer in the United States, you should consider a US visa.

Travel from your home country to the United States must be by air or sea with a company recognized by the U.S. government.

It is also imperative that you have not visited the following countries since March 2011: Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Syria or Sudan. In this case, your request will be automatically denied.

If you meet all these criteria, we explain how to order your ESTA for the United States.

On which websites can I apply?

Unlike applying for a U.S. visa, the applicant does not need to go to the U.S. embassy to apply for an ESTA. Everything happens online and in a few clicks. You don’t have to fill out any paperwork, the form is available on many websites. The payment of the order validates your request for authorization, that is why it is useful to have your credit card with you when you fill out the online questionnaire. Without payment, your request is not taken into account.

You can apply for ESTA in the United States either on the official government website or on the website of a private agency. Both provide an official ESTA USA. The difference lies in the support that private sites offer.

Once the information on the form has been correctly filled out, all you have to do is pay the fee for your request and wait for a response. Namely, it is the Department of Homeland Security of United States who will decide whether or not to obtain the ESTA.

How long does it take to receive a response?

The interest of the ESTA application also lies in the speed of the response. While a USA visa sometimes requires several months of waiting, the ESTA is issued within 3 days maximum, with most often an immediate response.

To see the answer, go to the official website of the American government and indicate your ESTA number and your passport number. Three statuses may appear: ESTA approved, ESTA pending and ESTA denied. Is your status approved? You can now plan your stay in the USA. A pending status does not mean that your request will be denied, it just means that it takes a little longer to analyze your file. If your application is denied due to an error on your part, reapply for approval. If there is no mistake on the form, a US visa application is required.

How long can I use my authorization?

From the moment you receive the ESTA permission to travel to the United Statesyou have the opportunity to make several visits during two years (official validity of the document).

Please note that there are some exceptions. If you have lost, misplaced or replaced your e-passport or biometric passport or if important information about you has changed, you will be required to apply for a new ESTA.

Can I change the information on the ESTA form?

After you obtain your ESTA authorization, some of the information on your authorization may be updated. However, these updates only concern the e-mail address and the destination address.

If you wish to change any other information, you will need to apply for a new ESTA for your stay in the United States.