All travellers to the US now must have an American ESTA.
20 January 2010
American ESTA now mandatory for all travellers
An American ESTA is now mandatory for all US-bound passengers, with travellers now required to complete the online form before departure.
The American ESTA, or Electronic System for Travel Authorisation, gives travellers prior approval for entry to the US and replaces the green I-94 card that passengers previously filled in on the flight.
It applies to all 35 countries with the US visa waiver status including: the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, and Ireland.
The ESTA was first introduced a year ago, but as of today it is mandatory for all travellers visiting for 90 days or less and should be applied for at least 72 hours in advance. The ESTA is necessary whether you plan to travel to travel to American for business or personal reasons.
Travellers without the authorisation will not be permitted to enter flights to America, British Airways and American Airlines Major have said.