The ESTA, a travel authorization issued by the American authorities, enables countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program to travel to the United States without a visa. As it is mandatory, it would be a shame to be refused entry to the U.S. because of an invalid ESTA. Here we explain why and when you should renew your ESTA.


The United States introduced ESTA to strengthen the country’s internal security. Travel authorization is easy to obtain (no need to go to the U.S. embassy) if the conditions are met.

This authorization is only required for sea and air travel.

Do not attempt to transit or travel to the USA without authorization, be it an ESTA, a US visa, a green card, etc., or you will be denied boarding. The United States is very strict in this area, and no exception to the rule is possible.

Please note that you may be refused entry to the USA even if you have a valid ESTA. The immigration officer is, in fact, authorized to refuse you entry if he or she considers that security measures have not been met or that you pose a threat.

The travel permit is valid for two years, during which tourist stays and short-term business trips (90 days maximum) are unlimited. After this deadline, you will need to submit a new application to the U.S. government to renew your ESTA.

Respecting the validity period is of course very important, but it is not the only reason why an ESTA authorization needs to be renewed.


As mentioned above, the ESTA is valid for two years from the date of issue. After this date, you will need to reapply, as the ESTA cannot be renewed automatically.

The ESTA authorization is linked to the traveler’s passport, so any change to its contents revokes the authorization to stay in the United States and therefore requires the authorization to be renewed:

To obtain ESTA authorization, travelers must answer yes or no to a series of questions. A change in circumstances relating to these matters also justifies cancellation of the authorization, and you must therefore renew your ESTA. Penal and administrative sanctions may be applied in the event of a lie or omission.


It is not possible to update your ESTA (apart from your e-mail address and postal address in the USA) or to take a shortcut to renew it. Renewal means a new ESTA application, and the procedure is the same as for an initial application.

What’s more, an accepted first application does not necessarily imply automatic acceptance of subsequent applications. This depends on current immigration policy. The most striking example is the current refusal to admit Iraqi, Syrian and Sudanese nationals, including dual nationals.

To apply for ESTA renewal, you need to go to the official government website or a private website to fill in the ESTA form.

Bring your valid passport (e-passport or biometric passport) and your credit card or PayPal ID to complete the form and pay for the ESTA.

Note that the fee is the same, since the authorities consider that this is not an ESTA renewal, but a new application.

There are three possible answers to your request for authorization: