The Department of Homeland Security announced Thursday that visa-free travel for Israeli nationals has begun.

‌‌Key Points:

  • In September, the United States designated Israel into the U.S. Visa Waiver Program, which allows eligible travelers to apply online for authorization to travel to the United States through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization.
  • These authorizations allow successful applicants to travel to the United States for tourism or business purposes for up to 90 days without first obtaining a U.S. visa.
  • Israeli travelers with a valid B-1 or B-2 visa may continue to use their visa for business and tourist travel to the United States.
  • Individuals may apply for travel authorization on the ESTA website. ESTA registration is generally valid for two years or upon expiration of the traveler’s passport, whichever occurs first.

Additional Information: Israel worked for years to obtain entry into the U.S. VWP. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said Israel “put forth a significant whole-of-government effort to meet all program requirements, including passing multiple new laws, establishing information sharing systems, and implementing new entry procedures for all U.S. citizens.” Israel will be the 41st member of the VWP.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group.

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