We understand. Sometimes things happen unexpectedly.
You booked your flights at the last minute and all of a sudden realized you needed an ESTA but you're already within the recommended 72 hour window?
Maybe you're even already at the airport and you made it to the check-in desk only to find out that you can't board your flight without an ESTA?
So, what should you do in this situation?
Is there a fast ESTA available or are there ESTA emergency services that will prioritise your application?
Unfortunately, the simple answer is no.
It would be great if there was some kind of ESTA express option that you could select.
But, that's not the case. There are no last-minute ESTA options available.
The only option is the standard ESTA application that everyone has to use.
But, the good news is that ESTA processing is usually pretty fast and even if you do find yourself applying from the airport, some applications are approved instantly, and often in as little as twenty minutes.
This is because the ESTA process is all automated and simply depends on the time it takes for the computers to run your details and eligibility question answers through the appropriate databases. This can be a matter of minutes for many people.
The exception to this is if your application requires some manual checking in the event that your details or answers have raised some red flags in the automated process. However, even if this is the case, your application should still be processed within 72 hours.
However, the visa process takes much longer as it requires more paperwork and an interview. For this reason, if you're in a rush, you will most likely need to change your plans.
If you have more questions, check out our FAQs here.