Formal Entry Requirements

Expats arriving into the United States are expected to show valid travel documents as part of the entry process. The documents that need to be shown will depend on which country you are arriving from as well your status and citizenship.

If you are arriving from Canada, Mexico or Bermuda, American citizens will need to show the following documents

  • Valid Passport
  • U.S Passport card
  • Trusted traveller program card (Nexus, Global Entry, Sentri or Fast) or an enhanced driver’s license.

A Permanent resident or foreign national who is living in the U.S will need their passport along with a U.S Visa and/or travel documents. These must be applied for before you travel.

Expats arriving from other parts of the world will be required to show:

  • A Passport (Regardless of their country or citizenship)
  • Permanent residents and foreign nationals may also need a U.S Visa (Which is applied for before you start your trip)

When travelling to the United States, it is important to travel with a valid, machine-readable passport and a visa will also need to be obtained. However, if you have citizenship and a valid passport of Canada or Bermuda or even have been accepted on a VWP Visa Waiver Program a visa is not required.

Expats must ensure that applications for visas are completed accurately and thoroughly and well in advance of before you travel.

The Visa Waiver Program

The Visa Waiver Program will allow an individual from specific countries to apply to enter the program if they hold a passport which is issued to set standards. People should allow 72 hours for this to be cleared; they will then be able to enter the US for tourism and business purposes for 90 days.

If you are not applying via the VWP, you must apply for a visa which will be issued by the US Embassy or Consulate. If this visa is refused, expats will be given a written visa. The visa will allow individuals to travel to the US but may not give you admission to the country. This is determined by the immigration official at the port of entry.