The United States government has started the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) that enables most nationals and citizens of participating countries to travel to the USA visa-free. Fortunately, Malta is one of those participating countries. So, Maltese passport holders are no longer required to have a visa to enter the United States of America.
That being said, Maltese citizens might be visa exempt, but they still require a travel document known as ESTA - an electronic system of travel authorization. Keep on reading to learn all about ESTA and how to obtain one!
Travel to USA - Entry Requirements
Yes, Maltese citizens have the visa-free access to the United States of America. However, to enter the country, all Malta passport holders are required to have travel documentation. However, the US government offers different types of documents for different purposes, such as:
If you want to visit the USA for tourism or business purposes, getting an e-visa ESTA is certainly the best pick for you. The best thing about ESTA is that you can apply for it from the comfort of your home. You don’t need to visit the US embassy or consulate. It is a completely streamlined process that can be done using a laptop or mobile device.
ESTA was established in 2009, allowing different foreign nationals to visit the USA without a visa. Travelers can get an ESTA within 3 working days. It is a multiple-entry travel document, allowing visitors to stay in the country for up to 90 days. The validity period of an ESTA is 2 years.
If you are visiting the United States of America for business purposes and want to obtain a visa, you can get a US B-1 visa. US offer B-1 visa to Malta citizens for professional and commercial activities, including:
Attending business meetings
Creating a contract in the US
Enrolling in a training program
Meeting with business associates
The B-1 visa comes with a validity period of 10 years and allows the visa holder to stay in the country for 180 days per entry.
In case you want to visit the United States of America for tourism, you are eligible to get a B-2 visa. A b-2 visa is perfect for those Maltese passport holders who are traveling to the USA for:
Visiting relatives or friends
Transiting through the country
If you have an ESTA but want to stay in the USA for more than 90 days, you can still apply for the B-2 visa. This visa allows you to stay in the country for 180 days and comes with a validity period of 10 years.
Applying for an ESTA From Malta
For tourism, business, and medical purposes, getting an ESTA is undoubtedly a better option. You can get an ESTA from the comfort of your home without attending a visa interview at the embassy. Moreover, the process of applying for ESTA is quite straightforward. All you need to do is:
Fill out the ESTA application form
Pay the MRV fee
Submit your application
It's recommended to visit your doctor before you start your journey to avoid any medical issues. You should also have the COVID-19 vaccination certification to avoid self-isolation. Once you get your ESTA, you can travel visa-free to the US.
To get your ESTA, you need a fulfill some visa requirements. There are some documents you must have before starting the procedure, including:
A valid passport
An e-mail address
A form of payment (debit or credit card)
You're required to provide personal details, contact information, and travel details as well. To fill out the ESTA application form, you will also have to provide your health background, employment history, residence permit, and passport details, including passport number and expiration date.
Once you submit the ESTA application form along with all the necessary documents, you'll have to wait for a few days. On average, Maltese citizens can get their ESTA within 72 hours. However, the actual processing time varies from applicant to applicant.
US Embassy in Malta
To Maltese nationals, we recommend applying for an ESTA. This is because you won’t have to waste your precious time visiting the embassy or scheduling an interview. All international travelers with an ESTA can enter the USA without a visa.
Alternatively, if you are not eligible for an ESTA, you'll need to get a traditional USA visa. To get a traditional visa, you're required to visit the US embassy located in Malta and submit your application in person. Depending on your purpose, you may have to schedule an appointment for a visa interview as well.
The US Embassy Address
Ta'Qali National Park Attard