Have you already enjoyed the benefits of the ESTA system by visiting the United States on a previous occasion, and wish to travel there again? You should be aware that in this case you can simply renew your travel authorisation. To learn how to do so and in which cases an ESTA renewal is possible here are some explanations and practical advice.Apply for ESTA
The ESTA travel authorisation system was implemented in 2009 with the aim of simplifying the procedure for travellers wishing to visit the USA. With the additional objective of reinforcing security in the country, the system consists of an online procedure of completing a simple travel authorisation application questionnaire.
The citizens of any of the 38 member countries of this system that wish to visit the United States for a period of less than 90 days can benefit from this system and are therefore exempt from applying for a traditional visa, they can use the travel authorisation obtained for a period of two years.
As we have just noted, the duration of validation of your ESTA authorisation is two years. Logically speaking, you do not need to renew your ESTA during this two year period as your authorisation remains valid for all visits during this period of less than 90 days. Once this period has expired, you will have to create a new application.
However, in certain cases, it will be necessary to complete a renewal of your ESTA before the end of its two year validity period. For example, if your passport number changes following a renewal or the loss of your previous electronic or biometric passport. In this case you will need to complete a new ESTA application. The same applies if your personal situation changes (marriage, divorce…) or you change your citizenship status or gender.
To summarise, we could say that if one of the questions of the last part of the application form gives place to a different answer than that originally entered on your first application then you should renew your ESTA authorisation before travelling to the United States.
To renew an ESTA authorisation, you need to simply follow the same procedure completely. However, you do not need to use the same website as that for your initial application; you can find the application form questionnaire in several languages on our website.
In the same way as with your initial procedure, you should respond carefully to all the questions and make your payment for the processing of your application including fees. You should of course take the time to carefully read through all the information you have entered to verify for mistakes before submitting your application.
You will then receive a response from the American immigration services by email within a maximum period of 72 hours.
You are undoubtedly wondering if you will need to pay the costs for your new ESTA application again if it simply expires or you just need to make some minor alterations in the information provided. This is unfortunately the case as the cost of an ESTA renewal is exactly the same as an initial application.
In fact, when you renew your application, the American authorities responsible for border controls need to examine it in the same way as the original by confirming the information it provides. Therefore the costs inherent in examining the application and providing a response need to be covered again too.
The only modification that does not require a complete ESTA renewal is related to a change of your email address which can be completed for free using your file reference number.
You may already know how to renew your ESTA authorisation. But you may also be wondering when is the best time to proceed with this renewal. We recommend that you do not wait until your ESTA has expired or to the last moment before your visit to complete the renewal of your travel authorisation.
In fact it is entirely possible to proceed with an ESTA renewal before the expiry of your previous authorisation. The new ESTA obtained will replace the original which will be cancelled. Of course, the validity period of your new ESTA will take effect upon its acceptation and not from the expiry date of the previous one. It is also not recommended that you apply for a renewal too early if you do not plan to travel in the near future. It is also possible to apply for a new ESTA well after the expiry date of the previous one.
But then when is the ideal time to renew an ESTA? As you already know, the processing time for your ESTA application is a maximum of 72 hours from the submission of your application form online. However, if your application is refused you may be able to reapply with a new ESTA application following a ten day pause after receiving your notification, or you may be eligible to apply for a visa. Therefore, and to be sure that your trip continues according to plan, it is best to renew your ESTA at least 15 days before your departure date.
Another often asked question concerns the renewal of your passport during the ESTA validity period: In this case are you also required to renew your travel authorisation? The response to this question is again positive.
In fact, it is important to remember that your ESTA is electronically linked to your passport and its number. If you obtain a new passport with a different number you will need to also renew your ESTA noting your new passport number so that verification is possible.
This is also the case if you renew your passport following the loss of the original, in the same way as with a passport that reaches its expiry date.
The advantage is that your ESTA will again be valid for a period of two years following its issuance.