Visa Waiver Program


The Visa Waiver Program (VWP) enables nationals of participating countries to travel to the United States for tourism or business (B-type visa purposes only) for stays of 90 days or less without obtaining a visa.

The program was established to eliminate unnecessary barriers to travel, stimulate the tourism industry, and permit the Department of State to focus consular resources in other areas. Nationals of VWP countries must meet eligibility requirements to travel without a visa on VWP, and therefore, some travelers from VWP countries are not eligible to use the program. VWP travelers are required to have a valid authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to travel, are screened at the port of entry into the United States, and are enrolled in the Department of Homeland Security's US-Visit program. Although not required, VWP-eligible travelers may apply for a visa, if they prefer to do so.


All travelers coming to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program must obtain authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to initiating travel to the United States. For more information about ESTA and to register, visit the U.S. Custom and Border Protection's Electronic System for Travel Authorization website.

If you do not qualify for the Visa Waiver Program or are traveling to study, work, participate in an exchange program, or any other purpose that does not fall under a B-type visa purpose of travel, you will need a nonimmigrant visa.

Other Information

Learn more about the Visa Waiver Program at the Department of State's VWP website.
Review the important DHS Advisory Warning about unauthorized third-party ESTA application related web sites.