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ESTA for Finnish Citizens

An ESTA is an electronic travel document that grants Finnish citizens entry to the United States of America. This means the traditional physical label (passport sticker) is no longer required for Finns when entering the US as the ESTA visa waiver is issued digitally.

ESTA stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorization, and it is also known as the US visa waiver for eligible countries, such as Finland. With this electronic permit, a Finnish national can visit the country for up to 90 days at a time.

In 2009, the US Visa Waiver Program was set up by the government of the United States for the allowance of short-term travel permits to its territory.

The visa waiver program allows nationals from Finland to apply online anytime, anywhere, and must be completed prior to their departure to the United States.

ESTA Requirements for Finns

ESTA rules and regulations, known as US visa waiver requirements, must be followed by Finns before planning their trip to the United States since they are crucial for a successful application.

First, Finnish travelers need to submit their applications with time. At least 72 hours before arrival, in the USA is the minimum time frame recommended. It is so, to avoid any unforeseen inconveniences and potential difficulties regarding getting the ESTA.

Additionally, Finnish citizens need to be aware that the passport is connected to the visa waiver, thus, it is a requirement that enables faster processing and a quicker review at border control.

For this reason, it is convenient for Finnish travelers to have a machine-readable passport with an electronic chip before making any travel plans to the USA.

Finnish citizens are also encouraged to keep a copy of the approved ESTA in printed form or digitally after receipt.

Other eligibility requirements that Finnish citizens should follow is having a clean criminal record. Being previously arrested or involved in a criminal conviction could result in a rejection of the US visa waiver. It is of high regard for Finnish travelers to check their criminal backgrounds to make sure that they are all cleared.

How to Apply for an ESTA as Finn Citizen

The application process is simple. It is usually completed within just 10 minutes and the final result (determination of the application) is normally obtained within 24 hours.

It consists of a US visa waiver digital application form with a battery of straightforward questions that need a truthful answer with the filling of the Finnish national’s personal information. Moreover, security and safety questions must be answered before the US ESTA application is paid.

It is of utmost importance to complete the form with the exact information provided in the passport. Untruthful information or errors can be penalized with the rejection of the visa waiver. For this reason, nationals from Finland are recommended to review their application form before submitting it.

The vast majority of the applications are approved quickly, however, some could be denied. Nevertheless, Finnish travelers can reapply for a new electronic permit when their travel circumstances have changed significantly or there are present mistakes to be corrected on the received ESTA authorization.

Another reminder for Finnish citizens is to apply for an ESTA with the same passport as they are willing to travel. It is a common mistake of applicants to apply for a US Visa using a passport that is no longer valid (expired) or reported as stolen, and consequently the application results in denied. It is of high emphasis for Finnish nationals to double-check their documentation validity beforehand.

Main Features of the US ESTA for Finland: Duration, Validity & Use

The US ESTA is a multiple-entry document with a validity period of 2 years. In other words, Finnish citizens to possess an ESTA for the United States can visit the country several times with the same document staying for a maximum period of 90 days each time.

The ESTA can be utilized for the following reasons:

  • Health and medical endeavors
  • Tourism and leisure
  • Business

Accordingly, an approved ESTA does not authorize the ability to work. It is only meant for the reasons mentioned above. Nevertheless, Finnish ESTA holders can enroll in short term study courses or recreational activities such as music festivals or social events

The determination of the ESTA application is communicated by email. Finnish applicants will be notified via email all stages of the US ESTA application status, which can also be accessed online all-time in the case of uncertainty.

When should a Finn renew the ESTA?

The ESTA visa waiver is linked to the Finnish passport used during the application. This is the main reason why passport and personal data are necessary while registering the form.

Once the application is approved, the Finnish applicant who holds an ESTA cannot transfer their details to another account. In case the passport or the electronic visa waiver expires, Finnish nationals who wish to visit the US again should renew their visa waiver by starting a new application.

If nationals of Finland renew their passport they will need new ESTA as well.

Data protection for Finns applying for a US ESTA

All the information gathered by the US ESTA is protected by local authorities since the data is secured in first-class servers that provide a safe, trouble-free experience for Finland travelers using the US Electronic System for Travel Authorization.

Furthermore, having the ESTA adds a layer of security in addressing potential terrorist threats. Pre-screening is required to guarantee safety and efficiency for border control for both American and Finnish nationals.

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