Renewing Your USA Visa or ESTA: A Guide for Icelandic Travelers

Traveling to the United States represents an opportunity for new experiences, whether it’s the hustle of New York City, the scenic routes of California’s Pacific Highway, or the jazz-filled streets of New Orleans. As someone embarking from Iceland, you understand the allure of diverse landscapes and vibrant cities—identities that both our nations share. However, before you can take in the sights and sounds of the US, ensuring your visa or travel authorization is up to date is key. For Icelanders, renewing a US visa or reapplying for an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) is a straightforward process that enables you to re-enter the Land of the Free with ease.

As a participant in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), Icelandic citizens have the privilege of traveling to the US with greater ease, using the ESTA instead of a traditional visa. The ESTA allows for short-term visits for tourism, business, and transit for up to 90 days at a time. Renewing your permission to travel involves ensuring all details are current and compliant with the latest requirements.

The Process of Renewing Your US Travel Authorization

When your ESTA expiration is drawing near, or if your passport information has changed, it is essential to renew your authorization. The process of renewal resembles the initial application, and it can be broken down into a few simple steps:

  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 authorisation 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.

When Should Icelanders Renew Their US Visa or ESTA?

Routine renewals are critical to maintaining uninterrupted travel ability. You should consider applying for a new ESTA when:

  • Your previous ESTA has expired or will expire soon.
  • You obtain a new passport.
  • Your name or gender has changed.
  • There are changes in circumstances that affect your eligibility for the VWP, such as a new criminal record.
  • You have previously overstayed during a trip to the US under the VWP or any other type of visa, as this may affect your eligibility.

Icelandic travelers should apply for their renewals well ahead of their planned travel date to avoid any unforeseen delays. Remember, an ESTA is valid for two years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first. Upon expiration, a renewal is required prior to your next visit to the US.

Eligibility for an ESTA for Icelandic Citizens

Iceland, as one of the VWP Countries, provides its citizens with a simplified approach to US travel authorization. To be eligible for an ESTA, applicants must:

  • Hold a passport from a VWP-eligible country, such as Iceland.
  • Plan to stay in the United States for 90 days or less.
  • Travel for business, pleasure, or while in transit.
  • Have a return or onward ticket if arriving by sea or air.
  • Not hold a visitor’s visa for the US.

If you are ineligible for the VWP, you’ll need to apply for a visa, and it’s advisable to plan well in advance due to the longer processing times and additional requirements this entails.

FAQs on Renewing a US Visa or ESTA

Can I renew my ESTA before it expires?

Yes, you can apply for a new ESTA at any time before your current ESTA expires. It’s recommended to reapply at least 72 hours before departure.

Is renewal guaranteed for Icelandic travelers?

As with all applications, renewal is subject to approval by the United States Customs and Border Protection (USCBP). However, Icelandic citizens who maintain their eligibility under the VWP have a high chance of renewal.

If my passport has expired, can I still renew my ESTA?

No, your ESTA is tied to your passport. If your passport expires, you need to apply for a new ESTA using your new passport details.

What if my renewal is denied?

If your ESTA renewal is denied, you may need to apply for a traditional visa at a US Embassy or Consulate.

What changes should be reported for renewal?

Any changes in your biographical information or changes to your VWP eligibility criteria should be updated during the renewal process.


Renewing your US travel authorization as an Icelander shouldn’t be a roadblock on your journey to the United States. With straightforward steps and the ease of the ESTA system, you can ensure that your travels are smooth and free of last-minute visa stress. Making sure you stay informed of the process and deadlines is key to a seamless travel experience. Don’t forget to apply or renew your ESTA with sufficient lead time and to check the validity of your passport before your journey across the Atlantic. Travel safe, and we look forward to helping you maintain your adventures in the United States.

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