Is my current ESTA valid?
ESTA permits are usually valid for 2 years, unless the passport expires first, then a new ESTA application must be made with a new passport.
To find out if an existing ESTA permit is still valid, you should check your ESTA status. For this purpose, the ESTA portal of Homeland Security, or the portal of an ESTA intermediary offers a function "Verification of an existing application" on the corresponding website. The status can be retrieved by entering the personal passport number, the date of birth and the application number. If the application number can no longer be found, this can be circumvented. In this case, the button "I do not know the application number" must first be clicked. After that, information such as the country of citizenship, the date of issue of the passport, the expiry date of the passport and the date of birth will be entered to retrieve the status.
After successfully entering the required data, the ESTA Status Check can come up with one of the following three results:
- ESTA Authorization approved. In this case, the confirmation of the application approval and the receipt for the amount paid are displayed. Ideally, this receipt should be printed out and the registration number of the ESTA approval should be noted for the upcoming trip.
- Travel not authorized. Should the ESTA Status Check come to this conclusion, urgency is required if the USA trip is to take place soon. The refusal results to make a personal appointment at a US embassy to apply for a visa for the planned trip. Usually the visa is combined with a short personal interview at the US embassy.
- Authorization pending. This message may appear if either the application is younger than 72 hours, or the decision has not yet been made for other reasons. If the ESTA application was filed less than 72 hours ago, a further status check is recommended as soon as the time span has elapsed.