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Do German Citizens Need a Visa to Visit USA?


Time and again, Germans have confirmed their reputation of being avid travelers, both within their own country and abroad. They call themselves Reiseweltmeister, which means “world champions of travel.” And, the United States has been one of the most popular travel destinations for Germans. According to spokesperson of Brand USA, Germans love secluded areas and adventure holidays. 

An approximate of 2 million Germans enter USA each year, making it the sixth largest country in terms of international visitors, says an article on Deutsche Welle. The travel bans imposed by the Trump administration have projected the US as a less hospitable country. However, German vacationers have remained unaffected by such perceptions.

How can German Citizens to Travel to USA

Germany is one of the countries included in the US Visa Waiver Program. This means that German citizens do not need a visa to enter America for leisure or business purposes. All they need to do is apply for an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). This is a system that determines whether an individual is eligible to travel to USA.

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How can German Citizens Apply for ESTA

German nationals can apply for an ESTA online. It takes only about 10 minutes to fill and submit the application. However, it is advisable to apply 72 hours prior to your date of travel. This is because if, for some reason, an ESTA is denied, you still have ample time to apply for a B1 or B2 visit visa. 

Things to Remember Before Applying for an ESTA

  • You can apply for an ESTA only if your duration of stay is 90 days or less. 
  • All German travelers entering USA via air or sea require an ESTA.
  • ESTA covers travel purposes such as tourism, medical treatment, transit, business and so on.
  • A separate application is required for each traveler, including infants.
  • The multiple entry ESTA is valid for 2 years from the date of approval.
  • An ESTA holder cannot engage in paid work, studies or any kind of training. 
  • If you are a potential threat to the welfare of the United States, you are not eligible for an ESTA.

Documents Required for German Citizens for ESTA

You will need your biographic information, such as name, contact details, ID number, travel and credit card information, etc., to fill the application form. Apart from these, an electronic passport, containing a digital chip with all your biometric information, is needed. This passport should remain valid for at least 6 months from you date of arrival in the US. You will also need your passport number and Personal Identification Number (PIN).

How to Fill an ESTA

Fill up the application by following these simple steps:

  1. Start by providing your general information. You can also choose from three processing times – standard, rush and super rush processing.
  2. The second step is to recheck the information to ensure it is all accurate, and then make the non-refundable fee payment of $14.
  3. The last step is the questionnaire that requires some basic information. Other documents might be mandatory, depending on your circumstances. 

In case an ESTA is denied, you can always fall back on a traditional US visa to enter the country.

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Blogger, Entrepreneur, Mentor. Having lived in the US and the Middle East for about a decade, and gone through immigration many times, I have a lot to share. Add me on Facebook or contact me on WhatsApp +0014084894785

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