Traveling to the USA: Visa Duration & Validity for Icelanders

For citizens of Iceland considering a trip to the United States, understanding the visa duration and validity is paramount in planning a smooth and enjoyable journey. Known for its vibrant cities, stunning natural landscapes, and rich cultural heritage, the United States offers an array of experiences that cater to all kinds of travelers. From the bustling streets of New York City and the glamour of Los Angeles to the scenic beauty of the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone National Park, there is something in the US for every Icelander to enjoy.

When it comes to entering the United States, Icelandic citizens, as part of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) Countries, have a convenient option at their disposal: the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). Below, we will delve into the specifics of the ESTA, including its validity period and how Icelandic travelers can utilize it for temporary visits to the United States.

Understanding ESTA for Icelandic Travelers

The ESTA is not a visa but rather an authorization for citizens from VWP countries to travel to the United States for tourism, business, or while in transit for up to 90 days without obtaining a visa. For Icelanders, this means a more streamlined and less cumbersome process than applying for a conventional visa.

The ESTA validity is quite generous. Once approved, it is valid for two years or until the traveler’s passport expires, whichever comes first. During this period, Icelandic passport holders can enter the United States multiple times without having to reapply for each trip, provided each stay does not exceed 90 days.

How to Apply for an ESTA

To apply for an ESTA, Icelandic citizens can follow a straightforward three-step process:

  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, and 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!

In case of urgent travel plans, Icelandic travelers can opt for one of the expedited processing options offered during checkout, ensuring they receive their ESTA swiftly.

Requirements and Conditions

Icelandic citizens should be mindful of the following requirements and conditions associated with the ESTA:

  • Passport Validity: A valid electronic passport with a digital chip containing biometric information is required. The passport must also be valid for at least six months beyond the intended period of stay in the United States.
  • Purpose of Visit: ESTA is suitable for tourism, certain types of business visits, and transit. It is not intended for study or work.
  • Misconceptions: An approved ESTA does not guarantee admission to the United States. Customs and Border Protection officers at ports of entry have the authority to grant or deny admission.
  • Updating Information: Certain travel information and updates to your profile can be made on an existing ESTA authorization, but in cases of a lost or renewed passport, a new ESTA application is necessary.
  • Accuracy of Application: Ensure all information on the ESTA application is accurate to avoid delays or denial of entry.

Overstaying and Compliance

It is crucial for Icelandic visitors to comply with the duration of stay permitted under the ESTA. Overstaying can result in denial of future travel under the VWP and may necessitate obtaining a visa for subsequent visits. It is advisable to depart the United States within the 90-day timeframe to maintain eligibility for visa-free travel in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Happens If My Passport Expires Before My ESTA?

Should your passport expire before the two-year validity of your ESTA, the ESTA also expires. You must obtain a new passport and reapply for a new ESTA before traveling to the United States again.

Can I Extend My Stay in the USA with an ESTA?

No, you cannot extend your stay beyond the 90-day limit under ESTA. If you wish to stay longer, you must obtain a visa that allows a longer duration of stay.

Are All Icelandic Citizens Eligible for an ESTA?

Yes, Icelandic citizens are eligible as Iceland is a member of the VWP Countries. However, individuals who have traveled to or been present in certain countries after March 1, 2011, or hold dual nationality with certain countries may not be eligible for ESTA.


The ESTA provides Icelandic citizens with a convenient method for short-term travel to the United States. By adhering to its validity and requirements, Icelanders can enjoy the multitude of experiences the US has to offer with ease and confidence. Should you require an ESTA, begin your application journey with us and get one step closer to your American adventure.

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