WASHINGTON – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the launch of a new mobile application to enable travelers potentially eligible to enter under the Visa Waiver Program to submit ESTA applications easily and quickly from their smartphones, mobile devices or tablets.
Administered by CBP on behalf of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) was established under the Visa Waiver Program to strengthen the security of travel to the United States. ESTA is an automated system which determines the eligibility of visitors traveling to the United States and whether such travel poses any law enforcement or security risk.
“The new ESTA app reinforces CBP’s mobile application strategy. We know the future is digital and we must stay forward leaning” said Matthew Davies, Executive Director, CBP Admissibility and Passenger Programs. “We will continue to innovate and implement technologies to streamline our processes and meet traveler expectations.”
Prior to the launch of the ESTA mobile app, travelers applied for authorization only through the official CBP website, which continues to service ESTA applications. As the use of smartphones and tablets increased, CBP recognized the need to provide a mobile-friendly experience to applicants. Now, with the ESTA mobile app, travelers will have the Visa Waiver Program in the palm of their hands and be able to:
- Launch an ESTA application;
- Scan an image of their passport;
- Have their passport read and confirmed;
- Upload a live video selfie to confirm their identity;
- Add personal and travel details to their application;
- Answer eligibility questions;
- Review and submit their application;
- Make changes or updates to their application or profile;
- Receive notifications and application status updates; and
- Save time by storing their preferences and profile details within the app.
The ESTA mobile app is available in 24 different languages and was designed to serve travelers in all 40 countries whose citizens are permitted by DHS to travel to the United States for business or tourism for stays of up to 90 days without a visa.
ESTA has been a highly effective security and vetting tool under the Visa Waiver Program. Since its inception in August 2008, CBP has approved millions of ESTA applications and authorized travelers from around the world to visit, explore and enjoy the United States. Download the free ESTA mobile app from the App Store (Apple) or the Google Play Store (Android).