American Holiday Search
Passport & Visa
ESTA - Procedure update August 2010:
We would like to remind you that as of January 2009 the US Government requires you to apply for pre-authorisation for US immigration using the on-line ESTA system.
As of the 8th September 2010, all applications for an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) will incur a charge of $14. Payments should be made by credit or debit card at the time of application at: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov Applicants applying for an ESTA prior to this date should not incur this charge.
Travellers who have not received ESTA approval may be denied boarding, experience delayed processing or be denied admission at a US port of Entry. It is very important that you fill in the ESTA form.
You can access this on-line service via the following link:
www.touramericadirect.co.uk (top right handside) or via https://esta/cbp/dhs/gov
ESTA approval, which around 99% of applicants receive more or less instantly, is normally valid for 2 years or until your passport expires, so there is no harm in applying as soon as you know you will be taking a trip to the US (or via the US).
If you would like our assistance in making the application please contact us.
A couple of tips when applying for ESTA:
Have your passport handy when applying - you will need the number, issue date and expiry date
You are only obliged to fill in the compulsory fields - marked with a red asterisk so don't worry if you have not decided, for example, on where you will stay upon arrival.
ESTA only applies to citizens of countries on the US visa waiver programme - like Ireland. Everyone else needs a visa rather than ESTA clearance.
Even with ESTA clearance you still need to provide your airline with the API (advance passenger information) details that they will ask you for.
As the fee for ESTA is only applicable from 8th September 2010 and amounts to $14, be wary of websites which charge a higher amount or any charge before 8th September while providing no service of value.
US Immigration Clearance:
Please be advised that due to congestion, US immigration services in Dublin Airport only serve certain flights. Clients with onward connections in the US ought leave sufficient time to clear immigration upon arrival in the US if travelling on the following flights which are not being precleared in Dublin :
- Aer Lingus to Dulles, Washington
- Aer Lingus to San Francisco
- Aer Lingus to Orlando
- Aer Lingus Flight 109 to JFK
- Continental Airlines Flight 127 to Newark
- US Airways to Philadelphia
All passengers, including children & infants, must be in possession of a valid passport. Certain categories of Irish Passport Holidays are not entitled to Visa free travel and you should check with the US Embassy for details of these categories before you purchase your holiday.
Please note that passports take between at least 4-6 weeks to secure, so applications should be made well in advance. It is your responsibility to ensure that exactly the same name (including initials) appears on your ticket as in your passport. If there is any difference, you may be refused entry onto your flight. We regret that we cannot accept any liability if you are refused entry onto any flight or into any country or otherwise suffer any difficulties or incur any costs as a result of not having an acceptable passport or any required visa(s).
Machine Readable Passports - Any passport issued after 26th October, 2006 must have a digital photograph otherwise the passport holder must obtain a visa to travel to the USA.