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August 8, 2013


If you have a valid visa you are not required to register under ESTA

If you hold a valid U.S. visa you are NOT required to register under ESTA before traveling to the United States.  ESTA applies only to those traveling visa free under the Visa Waiver Program.   If you have yet to determine if you are eligibile to travel visa free, let our Visa Waiver Wizard help you decide.


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  1. karen phillipps
    Nov 5 2010

    I received an American Visa, necessary for travelling on a private plane, 2 years, ago, valid for ten
    years. Do I also need an ESTA?

    Thank you,


    • Nov 5 2010

      Karen – Please contact the Embassy Operator Service on 09042 450 100 (1.20/min) for further advice.

  2. Andy Whyte
    Feb 2 2011

    I am a UK citizen with a 10 year B1/B2 visa, still valid until 2012, do I need to register under ESTA to travel to the US later this month for a 7 day holiday?


    • Feb 3 2011

      Andy – If you hold a valid U.S. visa you are not required to register under ESTA. ESTA applies only to those traveling visa-free under the Visa Waiver Program.

  3. Anthony Mac Donagh
    Mar 27 2011

    My passport has expired but my visa is still valid. When I renew my passport do I have to renew my Visa? I have read elsewhere that I renew my passport and carry the old one with me and produce it when I go to travel to America is this correct some advise would be much appreciated.

    • Mar 28 2011

      Anthony – If the passport containing a valid visa has expired, the visa in the old passport can still be used provided that you also carry a valid passport of the same nationality. However, if the passport authority clipped the corners of your old passport when canceling it and, in so doing, damaged the visa in any way, that visa is no longer valid and cannot be used for travel to the United States.

      • Kathryn
        Nov 8 2011

        I am in the same position as Anthony in that my British passport containing an indefinite US visa for multiple applications for entry expired in 1986 and was cancelled. The visa entry is undamaged. I am concerned that I might have trouble at the US border if I try to use this due to its age. Can you confirm that this is definitely acceptable or would I be better off avoiding potential issues by applying under the visa waiver programme? I will be in Canada for a holiday and may wish to visit the US by entering at Buffalo for example.

        • Nov 22 2011

          Kathryn – The United States Government ceased issuing “indefinite” validity visas on March 31, 1994. Since that time, an indefinite visa has been considered to be valid until the tenth anniversary of its issuance. As more than ten years have passed since the issuance of your indefinite visa, it is no longer valid for travel to the U.S. Visit our website at for information about traveling under the Visa Waiver Program by land from Canada.

  4. Nov 22 2011

    Nicky – Information about entry and length of stay on a J-1 visa is available on our website at

  5. Lorenzo Sisti
    Aug 18 2013

    I am an Italian Citizen with a F1 VISA got at the US Rome Embassy. Next week I’ll fly to the school in Florida. Do I need to apply an ESTA as well?


    • Aug 23 2013

      Holders of valid visas are not required to register under ESTA. Registration under ESTA is for qualfied Visa Waiver Program travlers who are entering the United States for business or pleasure by air or sea carrier.

  6. Emily
    Aug 19 2013

    I am due to go on holiday to Florida with my boyfriend in September. My boyfriend is currently working in America and has been since March of this year, but he will arrive back in England 3 days before our holiday.
    He travelled to America last year on holiday so has a valid Esta from his last trip which was less than 2 years ago. Because he has been working over in America would this cancel out his current approved Esta?
    Please can you advise of the best course of action to avoid any problems?
    Thank You

    • Aug 23 2013

      Registration under ESTA is valid for two years from the date on which it is approved or until the date on which the passport expires or travelers biograhic details or eligibiity for the program changes, which ever comes first. In this case, if your boyfriend has spent an extended period of time working in the United States, he should ensure that he is able to present to the satisfaction of U.S. immigration at the Port oF Entry, evidence of his intention to return to the United Kingdom at the end of his holiday. As each person’s circumstances differ there is not set evidence required; the onus is on the traveler to furnish what is appropriate in his or her case.

  7. Dennis
    Aug 20 2013

    I was in violation of my F1 status in 2003 ( dropped a few credits and violated my full time status) , I applied to be reinstated and my application was successful.

    However later that year, due to poor GPA the university asked me to leave and apply for a prospective student visa or a new F1. ( INS did not serve me any notice or never cancelled my F1 Visa. I left on my own accord- after consulting the university )
    The F1 visa expired in 2007, in all I spent 1.5 years on it,

    I am now an EU citizen ( acquired in 2012 ) and would like to visit the US for 7 days.

    Am i eligible to apply for ESTA or will I need to apply for a visa?

  8. Jul 6 2009

    If you have been denied entry into the United States you are no longer eligible to travel visa free under the Visa Waiver Program. If you hold a valid visa, but were denied entry when applying for admission on this visa, you will be required to apply for a new visa. We cannot recommend that you attempt to travel on the visa in your possession.

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