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Updated on 07.09.2023

ESTA application via app

The application for visa-free entry to the USA with ESTA is now also possible via app. We take a closer look at the new application option and show you the advantages of the app.
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Innovation in the ESTA application process

Traveling to the U.S. is an exciting experience, and fortunately for many individuals, it is available under the visa-free entry (Visa Waiver Program) and by means of a fairly straightforward ESTA application. With the introduction of the new ESTA app, applying for an ESTA travel authorization is now even easier and more convenient than ever before.

Our feedback

We took a closer look at the new ESTA app and tested the mobile application process for you. Here is a brief guide first:

  • Download the app "ESTA mobile" from the app store of your provider
  • If you already have a current/approved ESTA, you can call it up or start a new application
  • Scan the photo page of the passport so that it is within the specified border
  • Position your smartphone on the outer cover of the passport to read the data from the RFID chip
  • Position your face inside the oval circle on the display
  • Now fill in the rest of the data in the application and check if the read data is correct
  • Pay the 21 USD by MasterCard, VISA, American Express or PayPal
  • You can view your data at any time in the app and do not need an additional printout for the trip


Basically the Application via the app is much faster, surprisingly simple, and even seems more helpful than the process via the browser.

Every step is explained and the reading of the data works well, provided you have a relatively new passport. We also tested the app with older passports, but unfortunately the RFID chip data could not be recognized. In this case, travelers have to go to the ESTA website and apply for the permit there.
After scanning and reading out the data, you should definitely check again whether all data has been correctly transferred from the system. Especially during the scanning process, there may be isolated transmission errors.

So if you have received a passport within the last few years, the app is definitely recommended for a quick ESTA application. All travelers with an older passport will probably have to resort to the regular online application for the time being, since the data cannot always be read from the smartphone.

Advantages of the ESTA app: speed and ease of use

The ESTA app revolutionizes the application process by allowing travelers to submit their applications from the convenience of their smartphone. The app is designed to be intuitive and user-friendly, so even the less tech-savvy can easily complete their application.
The ESTA app also offers the advantage of a fast processing time. The scanning and importing of passport data saves time during the application process and is not as error-prone as via the browser, where there are always problems when uploading the passport image.
The ESTA app also allows users to save their data for future travel, further simplifying the process. Strict care is taken to ensure that the privacy of applicants is preserved.
Focus on data security and data protection

The benefits of the app extend beyond just ease of use. The app offers fast completion and improved data security. By using state-of-the-art encryption technologies, personal information is protected and the privacy of the applicant is preserved. In addition, the app provides greater control and transparency over application status, allowing travelers to check the progress of their application at any time. Data protection regulations are complied with according to US authorities strictly observed to ensure that sensitive information does not fall into the wrong hands.

Travel with ESTA

With an ESTA travel authorization, travelers have several options for their visa-free stay in the US. The main goal of ESTA is to allow short business or leisure trips of up to 90 days without having to obtain a Visa applied for. Under the Visa Waiver Program eligible travelers may visit the US for tourism activities, business meetings, medical treatment, or cultural events, among other purposes.

ESTA also allows travelers to use transit flights in the US.

It is important to know that ESTA is not a guarantee of entry into the USA. It is merely a travel authorization that allows the U.S. authorities to obtain information about the traveler in advance and to conduct a risk assessment. However, the final decision on actual entry is the responsibility of the border control authorities in the USA.

The evolution of the ESTA application process over the years

Over the years, the ESTA application process for entry into the United States has continued to evolve. Originally designed as an electronic process, the process has been continuously improved to provide travelers with a faster and more user-friendly application process.

ESTA, the Electronic System for Travel Authorization, was established to ensure border security while providing travelers with an easier way to enter the United States. The system was implemented in 2008 and applies to nationals of countries that are on the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) participate

The main reason for the introduction of ESTA was to improve the process of pre-screening travelers and to identify potential security risks at an early stage. By applying for an ESTA travel authorization, travelers receive the US authorities information about travelers before they even enter the country. This allows for thorough screening and identification of individuals who may pose a threat to the country.

Overall, the ESTA application process has improved over the years to provide travelers with a more efficient way to enter the United States. By simplifying the process and providing advance verification, ESTA helps ensure security while improving travel convenience for eligible travelers.

The cost of the ESTA application are currently US$21. In addition, providers who process the application on behalf of the traveler may charge service fees.

Need help with your ESTA application?

For people who need help with the ESTA application, this can also be booked through an agency. The specialized team of our sister company The American Dream assists USA travelers with the application process for an additional service fee.
Services include:

  • Application via a simplified form
  • Real time consulting per live chat
  • Review of the application by ESTA experts
  • Money back guarantee, in case of rejection
  • and much more!
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Updated on 07.09.2023