Transit Through the USA: A Guide for Estonians Obtaining a Visa

For Estonians looking to traverse the vast expanse of the United States en route to another destination, understanding the transit visa information is paramount. The United States serves as a global hub for international flights, often necessitating a stopover or transit through one of its bustling airports. The cultural tapestry and diverse landscapes that define the US make any layover an opportunity to experience a slice of American life – even if just for a short while. Whether you’re taking in the vibrant cityscapes or enjoying some of the world-renowned airport amenities, a clear understanding of the transit visa requirements can help ensure a smooth journey.

To facilitate this, the United States offers the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), to citizens of Estonia. ESTA allows for a more streamlined process and is designed for short-term visitors, including those transiting through the US. By obtaining an ESTA, Estonian nationals can enjoy the ease of transiting through the US without the need for a traditional visa.

Understanding the ESTA for Transit

When planning your transit through the United States, it’s crucial to note that the ESTA serves the dual purpose of a visitor and a transit visa. It allows you to stay in the US for up to 90 days, which is more than sufficient for transit purposes. However, to transit without any issues, travelers must have their ESTA approved before boarding their flight.

How to Apply for an ESTA as an Estonian Citizen

The process for Estonians to acquire an ESTA is straightforward and fully online:

  1. Fill out our easy-to-use online application form. The application takes about 10 minutes. Make sure to have your passport handy.
  2. Submit & Pay for your application. We accept all payment types. PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay & Credit Card.
  3. Get your ESTA emailed to you within 72hrs. We’ll email you your approved travel authorization and that’s it, you’re ready to go!

If you need your ESTA in a hurry, you can choose from our two expedited processing options. Simply select your add-on at checkout.

Criteria and Eligibility for Estonian Nationals

To be eligible for an ESTA, Estonian travelers must meet the following criteria:

  • They must be a citizen of Estonia or other VWP countries.
  • They plan to stay in the United States for 90 days or less.
  • The purpose of their visit must be for transit, tourism, or business.
  • They must have a valid e-passport that includes a digital chip containing biometric information.

It is essential to keep in mind that even with an approved ESTA, admission into the United States is not guaranteed. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the port of entry have the final authority to permit or deny admission.

Documents Required for Transit Through the US

Estonian citizens should have the following documents ready when transiting through the United States:

  • A valid e-passport from Estonia or another VWP country.
  • An approved ESTA travel authorization.
  • Proof of onward travel, confirming you will be leaving the United States within 90 days.

These documents ensure that U.S. officials can verify your transit status swiftly, facilitating a smooth passage through airport formalities.

FAQs for Estonian Transit Passengers

Do Estonians Need a Visa for Less Than 24 Hours of Transit?

Even if the transit time in the United States is less than 24 hours, Estonian citizens are required to have an approved ESTA. This requirement ensures a hassle-free transit experience through airport security and immigration checkpoints.

Can an ESTA Be Used for Multiple Entries?

Yes, an ESTA is valid for multiple entries into the United States and is generally valid for two years or until the associated passport expires, whichever comes first. However, each stay must be limited to 90 days or less.

What Happens If I Am Denied An ESTA?

If an Estonian traveler’s ESTA application is denied, they must apply for a traditional transit visa through a U.S. Embassy or Consulate. It’s important to plan for possible delays associated with visa processing times.


For Estonian citizens, transiting through the United States is made much simpler with the ESTA. By ensuring your travel authorization is in order, you can make your journey through the US a little adventure in its own right. Remember to apply for your ESTA well in advance of your trip and check that all travel documents align with the latest entry requirements. Should you have any more questions or if you’re ready to start your ESTA application, apply here – it’s your first step towards securing your smooth transit through the States.

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