|GREATHOUSE LAW FIRM
Immigration and Nationality Law
|4607 Lakeview Canyon Road #329, Westlake Village, CA 91361
Tel: (818) 735-0626 Fax: (818) 484-4003 E-Mail: email@example.com
Copyright © 2008 Greathouse Law Firm
Legal Notice Site Map
|Recent Changes to Visa Waiver Program
Recently, President George Bush announced the inclusion of seven new countries to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) - the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, the Republic of Korea and the Slovak Republic. Since the announcement, however, travelers from these countries have not been able to take advantage of the VWP, as the United States government has been in the process of completing required internal steps before the VWP expansion can be completed.
According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, nationals from these countries may begin traveling to the U.S. through the VWP beginning on November 17, 2008. These travelers must possess a biometric passport and register through the newly implemented Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).
Under the VWP, nationals from certain designated countries are permitted to enter the U.S. without a visa if they wish to engage in tourist and business travel for less than 90 days. ESTA is an automated online system to screen passengers before they travel to the U.S. under the VWP. For the existing VWP countries, travelers will be required to register through ESTA beginning on January 12, 2009. Currently, this program is voluntary. All VWP travelers must present machine readable passports. Furthermore, depending on when the passport was issued, other requirements may apply.
Currently, the following countries are participants in the Visa Waiver Program: