Whether it's not pleasure or business, many Germans visit the United States of America each year and get that thrilling experience. If you're one of them, you might be wondering, do Germans need a US visa?
Well, fortunately, the United States government allows German citizens to enter the country without a visa. However, you still require travel authorization to enter the country. In this article, we have mentioned everything you need to know about traveling to the US from Germany.
US Visa Options for Germans
The United States of America has different traveling policies for different countries. Recently, they have started the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), enabling visitors of different countries to enter the US without a visa. Fortunately, German is also on the list.
This means that most German passport holders enjoy the visa exemption. That being said, they still require an ESTA - an electronic system for travel authorization.
Here's everything you need to know about ESTA and other visa options for Germans:
Electronic Tourist and Business Visa
If you are traveling to the US, the best approach for you is to get an ESTA. An ESTA is an electronic visa. The United States offers this e-visa for tourism, business, medical, and short study purposes. The best thing about an ESTA is that you can apply for it on your own. You don’t have to visit the US embassy or schedule a visa interview.
An ESTA is a multiple-entry document that comes with a validity period of 2 years. It allows a German citizen to stay in the country for 90 days. You can contact the US Citizenship and Immigration Services to extend your visit.
Things You Need...
The best thing about an ESTA is that it is simple and convenient. You don’t need to waste your time visiting the US embassy or following complicated procedures. Instead, you only need a handful of documents to apply for an ESTA, such as:
A valid passport
An email address
A debit or credit card
You can fill out an ESTA application form and submit it online to get your e-visa within 72 hours.
Tourist and Business Visa
If, for some reason, you are not eligible for an ESTA, you're required to get a traditional visa. The US government offers different types of visas for different purposes. For tourism and business, you can apply for:
B-1 Business Visa - A B-1 nonimmigrant visa is issued for professional and commercial purposes. You can apply for this visa to meet business associates, attend a training program or join a meeting in the US.
B-2 Tourist Visa - If you want to enter the country for tourism, you can apply for a B-1 tourist visa. A German citizen can get a tourist visa to visit a friend or relative, spend vacations, or for medical treatment.
Both B-1 and B-2 visas allow a German citizen to stay in the country for 180 days. These visas are multiple-entry documents that come with a validity of 10 years.
Things You Need...
There are some visa requirements and required documents that you need to apply for a visa, including:
A valid passport
A visa application form
A recent passport photo
Applying for an ESTA from Germany
Applying for an ESTA is a simple process. visa Applicants are required to fill out the ESTA application form. The application form contains your personal, contact, and travel details. Keep in mind that if an applicant has a criminal history, he/she won’t be able to get an ESTA.
In addition, you'll also have to answer some health and security-related questions. Your answers will be pre-screened by the Department of Homeland Security. You also need to provide passport details, including the passport number and expiry date.
Once you complete the application form, pay the visa fee using a secure online payment option, such as a debit or credit card. You'll be able to get your ESTA within 72 hours. However, due to secondary checks and high demand, you might have to visit a little longer to get your ESTA.
Note - Since March 2011, If you have traveled to Yemen, Somalia, Syria, Sudan, Iraq, or Iran, you are not eligible to apply for an ESTA.
US Embassy in Germany
Citizens of a foreign country participating in the Visa Waiver Program, including Germany, can enter the United States of America without a visa. All you need is an ESTA that can be obtained online.
However, if you are not eligible for an ESTA, you have to apply for a traditional visa. To get your traditional visa, you'll have to submit the visa application form to the embassy. VisaHQ can submit your application and arrange a visa appointment for you.
The US Embassy Address
Pariser Platz 2, 10117 Berlin