Passports: It is a requirement for entry into the United States and Canada that all persons (including children of any age) hold a valid 10 year British Passport. It is the responsibility of the customer and all members of the party to obtain a correct passport and entry visa if required. Passports should be valid for at least 6 months after the completion date of the holiday.
Visas: The majority of British visitors to the United States and Canada do not require visas provided they can fulfill the following conditions:
For the USA you do not require a visa if:
1. You are staying in the country for less than 90 days.
2. You have a full 10-year British machine-readable Passport valid for at least 90 days after your arrival in the US. Children of any age require their own passport.
3. You are a British Citizen.
4. You have not been refused a visa before, have not been refused admission to the USA deported or overstayed on a previous visit.
5. You are travelling on a major airline or sea carrier.
6. You are not planning to work in the USA.
7. You are travelling on a return air ticket.
8. You have no criminal record and have never been arrested (even if your arrest did not result in a conviction – you still need to obtain a Visa for the USA)
9. You have no communicable disease, drug or alcohol addiction, or a mental illness that may render you a danger to others.
Please note: If you were born in the USA you must travel on a US Passport unless you have formally relinquished American Citizenship and can prove that you have done so. This applies even to infants born in the U.S. but who have lived in the UK most of their lives, who are now UK citizens and have full British Passports! Under U.S. law anyone born in the U.S. is considered a U.S. Citizen unless they have formally relinquished their U.S. Citizenship. U.S. citizens must be in possession of a U.S. passport to enter or leave the United States. This is true even if you hold a passport from another country (eg UK – you should take both passports). If your U.S. passport has been lost or stolen, or if it has expired, you must apply to replace it before travelling the the United States. If you are in any doubt please check with the US Embassy.
From 21 January 2016 most people who have travelled to Iran, Iraq, Sudan, or Syria since March 2011, or are dual nationals of these countries, will no longer qualify for entry under the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) and existing ESTAs could be revoked. You will instead need to apply for a visa from the nearest US Embassy or Consulate. If in doubt please contact the nearest US Embassy or Consulate. Also, from 1 April 2016, all travellers wishing to enter the US under the VWP will need to hold a passport with an integrated chip (an ePassport).
Please note: British Subjects and anyone with a criminal record (even if it is “spent”), anyone who has ever been arrested (even if subsequently not charged), anyone with a drug or alcohol addiction must apply for a visa before booking their holiday, or risk being refused admission upon arrival, or denied boarding by the airline.
‘Indefinite’ US Visas to end: As of 01 January 1995, indefinite US visas will only be valid for 10 years from the date on which they were issued. Thus anyone holding and ‘indefinite’ B1/B2 visa which was issued more than 10 years earlier will need to apply for a new visa, or, if they qualify for the Visa Waiver Pilot Programme, travel without a visa.
In addition to requirements for visa-free travel the immigration authorities may wish to see proof of sufficient funds upon your arrival to sustain you if you are planning a long stay. They may contact any dependants or friends residing in the US or Canada who are listed by you as your sponsors to provide accommodation and/or sustenance during your stay.
Passports: Many passports contain a digital photograph which is printed on to the details page. Older passports often have a photograph which is glued or laminated on to the passport. Passports issued after the 26th October 2005 to passengers wishing to use the US Visa Waiver Programme must contain a digitally printed photograph. A photograph which is glued or laminated will not be acceptable for travel. Passports issued before the 26th October 2005 are exempt from this requirement. For further details of UK Passports, procedures and applications go to www.ips.gov.uk or call 0300 222 0000
Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). All Visa Waiver Passengers are required to complete an on-line application in English at www.esta.cbp.dhs.gov Travellers are encouraged to apply early and airlines have threatened to cancel any reservations where the ESTA has not been completed at least 72 hours prior to the first flight to the United States. This web-based system will prompt you to answer basic biographical and eligibility questions typically requested on a paper I-94W form. Applications can be submitted at any time prior to travel, but applications must be received no less than 72 hours prior to travel. In most cases you will receive a response within seconds and you will be advised if travel has been authorised, or not. If not, you will be required to apply for a visa. There is currently a charge of $14 per person (subject to change) for each ESTA application and each application, once granted, is valid for multiple journeys for up to two years from the date of issue, or until the expiry of the passport, whichever comes first. Please make a note of your ESTA approval number as you will need it if you subsequently need to update your ESTA for another visit to the USA.
Secure Flight Passenger Data (SFPD). It is a requirement of booking your holiday with Just America for you to provide us with the names, as they appear in the passport (including middle names), date of birth and gender of each passenger. By providing this, we can comply with the US Transport Security Administration’s (TSA) requirement that this data is included in every airline reservation for travel to the USA. The data is transmitted to TSA approx. 72 hours prior to your arrival in the USA. Although strictly speaking this information only has to be in the airline reservation at least 72 hours prior to the first flight, the airlines will not allow your ticket to be issued unless the data is in the reservation, hence we have to have the information several weeks prior to departure in order to issue your tickets. Reservations without the Secure Flight information will be cancelled by the airline.
Should you have any questions regarding passports, visas and visa-free travel to the USA you should contact the United States Visa Unit on 09068 200292. Calls cost 60 pence per minute. Or access the US Embassy website at: www.travel.state.gov/visa-waiver-program or www.london.usembassy.gov
For Canada British citizens are required to have an ElectronicTravel Authorisation (ETA) from 15 March 2016. The ETA can only be completed online at Canada.ca/eta and will cost CA$7.00 and is valid for five years.
For up-to-date information regarding your destination country and advice from the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office please visit www.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo
It is the responsibility of the passenger to ensure that they are correctly documented for travel to their intended destination. If you are in any doubt please contact the relevant embassy. The information above regarding Visa Free travel is intended as a guide and should cover most visitors, however Just America cannot be held responsible for any changes to the entry rules by the offices of the governments concerned, nor can we cover every rule and aspect of immigration procedure. If in doubt – ask the embassy!