Your Essential Guide to the USA Tourist Visa for Swiss Citizens

The United States has long beckoned travelers with its blend of vast natural scenery and vibrant cultural landscapes. From the mesmerizing alleys of bustling cities like New York and San Francisco to the serene beauty of national parks like Yellowstone and Grand Canyon, the US offers a plethora of experiences for every type of traveler. For Swiss citizens yearning to explore the vast expanses of the USA, understanding the requirements for obtaining the appropriate travel authorizations is a crucial step in planning their journey.

Fortunately for Swiss travelers, the process of acquiring a US tourist visa has been greatly simplified thanks to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Under this program, Swiss passport holders can apply for an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) which allows them to enter the United States for tourism, business, medical purposes, or transit for up to 90 days per visit without the need for a traditional visa.

Understanding the ESTA for Swiss Nationals

The ESTA is an automated system that determines the eligibility of visitors to travel to the USA under the Visa Waiver Program. Applying for an ESTA is a straightforward process and can be completed online, bypassing the more rigorous and time-consuming visa application process at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy.

This travel authorization is an essential document for Swiss citizens who intend to enter the United States for short stays. It’s important to note, however, that an approved ESTA does not guarantee entry into the US as the final decision rests with the Customs and Border Protection officers at the port of entry.

How to Apply for a US Tourist Visa as a Swiss Citizen

If you’re a Swiss passport holder, the steps you need to take for planning your tourism trip to the U.S. via the ESTA are very simple:

  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.

Tips for Swiss Citizens Traveling to the US

  • Verify Passport Validity: Make sure your Swiss passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned stay in the US.
  • Travel Purpose: Ensure that your visit falls under the categories permitted by the ESTA – tourism, business, medical purposes, or transit.
  • Duration of Stay: Remember that with an ESTA, you can only stay up to 90 days per visit.
  • Check ESTA Validity: An ESTA is generally valid for two years, or until your passport expires, whichever comes first. Ensure it covers the duration of your trip.

Swiss citizens can check if they are eligible for an ESTA by referring to the list of VWP Countries.

FAQs for Swiss Citizens About US Travel

Before packing your bags and heading off to the star-spangled adventures awaiting you in the US, you may have some questions about the process and the ESTA:

Do Swiss Citizens Need a Visa for the USA?

No, if you are staying for less than 90 days for tourism, business, medical purposes, or transit, you can instead apply for an ESTA under the Visa Waiver Program.

Is ESTA a Visa?

The ESTA is not a visa. It is a travel authorization for citizens of VWP countries that allow for short stays without the need for a visa.

Can I Work or Study in the US with an ESTA?

No, the ESTA does not permit work or study in the United States; you must apply for the appropriate visa for these activities.

What Should I Do if My ESTA Application is Denied?

If your ESTA application is denied, you must apply for a B-2 Tourist Visa or a B-1 Business Visa, depending on the purpose of your travel.

How Soon Should I Apply for an ESTA?

It is recommended to apply for an ESTA at least 72 hours before your departure, but it’s best to apply as soon as you decide on traveling to the US.


Embarking on a journey to the United States is a thrilling prospect for Swiss nationals, bursting with opportunities for discovery and adventure. By securing your ESTA, Switzerland’s globetrotters can ensure a hassle-free entry into the land of opportunity. Remember, the key to a smooth entry into the US is planning ahead and understanding the requirements of the VWP and the ESTA.

Should you have any more inquiries or need to start your application, do not hesitate to visit our application form page and take one step closer to your American dream. Explore, discover, and create memories that will last a lifetime. Bon Voyage!

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