The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Thursday officially launched the application for visa-free travel for short-term visits to the United States for eligible Israeli citizens, meaning that Israeli citizens meeting the criteria can now apply for authorization to travel to the United States, without a visa.
The application was launched through the US Customs and Border Protection's Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). The ESTA application can take up to 72 hours to process and is currently available only in English.
It would permit Israeli individuals to visit the United States for a maximum duration of three months without the need for a visa.
The US government recently announced that Israel had been accepted to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).
Under the stewardship of former US Ambassador to Israel Thomas Nides, Israel reached several significant milestones in the process, including helping the refusal rate for tourist visa applications to fall to below the three percent benchmark set by the US State Department, while the Knesset finalized legislation allowing Israel to share biometric data with the US.