Important entry regulations!
For our guests who are not citizens of the USA or Canada:
When entering the USA, you must have either a valid entry visa or ESTA entry permit. You need one of the two in any case!
ESTA or visa?
You can apply for the simpler electronic travel permit, ESTA, if you are a citizen of a Visa Waiver Program country. These include Australia, most EU countries, Japan, and several others. See the full list of VWP countries here.
If your country is not on the VWP list, you will need a visa.
Please note, that there are special rules for people who are citizens of a VWP country but have previously travelled to certain African and Middle Eastern countries or hold certain dual citizenships. In those cases, the visa requirement also applies to these countries. More information can be found here.
Applying for ESTA
Applying for ESTA is usually fast, but US immigration authorities are no longer guaranteeing real-time approvals. It is best to follow the recommendation to apply for ESTA at least 72 hours prior to departure. It's a very easy process. (You can set the process to your native language in the top right-hand corner.) On this page, you will also find other important requirements for entering with ESTA.
Applying for a visa
If you need a visa, we recommend that you apply for it immediately. Processing may take several weeks. The visa can be obtained from the US Embassy or Consulate in your country.
However, the first step, completing the DS-160 application form, can be done online. Instructions can be found here. (At the top right, you can change the language of the instructions.)
You will then need to complete the form and report to the US Embassy or Consulate in person. You can find out how long you must wait for an interview here, updated daily for each Embassy and Consulate. On this page, you can also learn everything else you need to know about the procedure.
It may be necessary for you to request an official invitation letter as part of your visa application. Please find our official invitation letter template here. Please fill in your personal details and check the dates in the invitation letter. Then, please send back the completed form to our Travel Coordinator, Ms. Panna Pusztabíró, at firstname.lastname@example.org, and she will send the signed letter by email to you as soon as possible. If you would like to have the original invitation letter as well, please let her know and send her the address where she can mail it with FedEx.
If you need assistance, please do not hesitate to contact her!