ESTA group application

Are you planning a trip to the USA with several people? Then the ESTA group application can save you a lot of work. We explain how group or family travel with ESTA works and what you must look out for when entering the United States.


Die offizielle Einreisegenehmigung für die USA!

ESTA for families and travel groups

Suppose you're traveling to the United States with a tour group, family, or business associates. In that case, the ESTA application for all persons traveling with you can be made with only one application process. The popular ESTA group application option is possible for up to 50 travelers and makes travel preparation much faster and less complicated.

ESTA group application: preparation is everything!

Name a primary applicant for the ESTA group and provide them with all the essential data for all travel group members. This step is important because the applicant must complete the application for each fellow traveler.

As the main applicant for the ESTA group application, make the following preparations:

  • Obtain a copy of each traveler's passport data page in jpg, png, or gif format.
  • Check the passport validity for all travelers: citizens of “Six Month Club” countries only need a passport valid through the last day of US travel. For all other travelers, the passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the planned departure date.
  • Gather the personal information of all group members, including names, date of birth, passport number, national identity number (if available), identity card number, and address.
  • Check with all travelers if the answer to any of the ESTA security questions related to medical conditions or travel to countries classified as risky or criminal activities is “yes.” In this case, the respective person must apply for a US visa instead of an ESTA.
  • Make sure that no member of your travel party intends to stay in the US longer than the 90 days allowed by ESTA and that no work is planned in the country.

The purpose of the trip (e.g., tourist round trip) must be the same for all members of your travel group.

Required data for an ESTA group application

For the submission of an ESTA group application, the following data is required from each traveler:

  • Name(s)
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • Nationality
  • Passport details
  • National identity number (if available)
  • ID card serial number (in case the national identity number is not available but is requested anyway)
  • Names of parents
  • Current employer, including contact details (if available) / In the case of children, "student" or "child" can also be entered.
  • Valid Email Address
  • Phone number
  • Information on the planned trip, including the first overnight address in the USA and the respective contact details
  • Information about the social media accounts operated by the traveler (optional)

Make sure all information is correct and complete before submitting the ESTA application. Errors or incomplete information can lead to the rejection of the application.

Create an ESTA group

After you have created an ESTA account for the main applicant either on the US government's website or with an ESTA agency of trust, you will get a group ID. When applying for an ESTA for group travel, you will go through the following steps:

  1. Enter the number of travelers. This allows you to determine how many ESTA applications should be completed during your application process.
  2. Fill out your own application.
  3. Click the “Add Applicant” button.
  4. Begin entering the data for the remaining travelers.

You can return to the application and continue working on it for seven days using your group ID.

Submit an ESTA group application

Once you have completed the ESTA form for everyone traveling with you, double-check all the information you have provided before submitting the applications. It is crucial that all information is correct and complete to ensure the application is successful.

After submitting a group ESTA application, it can take up to 72 hours for the approvals to be sent. In most cases, however, this happens within a few minutes.

Costs for an ESTA group application

An ESTA group application costs a minimum of $ 21 per person. If you want extra security and a money-back guarantee, you can hire the services of an ESTA agency for an average of € 50.

Payment of an ESTA group application

As the main applicant, you can pay for up to 50 ESTA applications together, making travel preparation for groups much easier. After completing and submitting the ESTA group application, you will be automatically redirected to the payment process.

The ESTA fee can be paid in US dollars or euros on the official US government website, but so far, only by credit card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, and Discover) or PayPal. Good ESTA agencies offer you other payment methods, such as Giropay, Apple Pay, EPS, and Sofortüberweisung.

ESTA denial for group applications

ESTA applications may be rejected for various reasons, such as incorrect or incomplete information, incorrect answers to ESTA security questions, and much more.

Especially for detailed group applications with many travelers, there is a higher risk of "unjustified" rejections of ESTA applications that are not based on the traveler's eligibility (such as previous convictions or previous denial of entry to the USA) but made due to errors caused by carelessness.

Does an ESTA rejection jeopardize the entire group trip?

It is possible that a member of your travel group does not meet the ESTA requirements. In this case, however, only the ESTA application of the traveler concerned will be rejected. The other members of the travel group will still receive their ESTA approval, provided they meet all the requirements for US travel with ESTA.

ESTA Rejected: Now What?

If a traveler in your group does not have their ESTA application approved, it does not mean that this person cannot travel to the USA. All you need to do is apply for a US visa. For such cases, always plan enough time in advance for the ESTA group application (ESTA application at least 6 weeks before the trip).

ESTA group application FAQ

Do you have further questions about the ESTA group application? Then you will surely find what you are looking for in our FAQ:

Is there an ESTA group discount?

Unfortunately, there is no group discount for the ESTA application process. Currently, each application costs a minimum of $ 21 per person.

Can I change an ESTA group application afterward?

Once an ESTA group application has been submitted, it can only be corrected to a limited extent. An incorrect answer to security questions or incorrect contact data can be corrected or updated shortly after sending and before approval in the ESTA status query.

Overnight addresses in the US and email addresses can also be changed after approval within the two years of ESTA validity.

How many people are allowed in one ESTA group application?

An ESTA group application is possible for up to 50 travelers.

Does everyone in a group ESTA application have to travel together?

You do not have to enter the country together with a group ESTA application. However, it is a mandatory requirement that the purpose of travel (e.g., vacation trip or conference in the USA) is the same for all members of an ESTA group application.

When should a group ESTA application be submitted?

We recommend applying for a family or group ESTA at the beginning of the travel planning process so that if complications arise with individual travelers, there is still time to apply for a US visa. However, ESTA approval is usually issued within 72 hours.

How much time do I have?

You can edit your ESTA group application for seven days before it is deleted. If you don't manage to get all the data on your fellow travelers within seven days and send off the application, it will be deleted, and you will have to start over.

Can I add more travelers to my ESTA group application?

You can only add more travelers to your complete ESTA application if you have not yet paid for it. After payment, you would need to create a new group in order to apply for more travelers.

Are there any special passport validity requirements for a group ESTA application?

For travelers from more than 100 countries in the US government's Six Month Club, only a passport valid until the last day of stay in the United States is required. For all other travelers, the passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the intended departure date.

Can a person whose ESTA application has been denied still participate in the group's travel plans?

If a traveler's ESTA application is denied, it does not mean that the person cannot travel to the United States. It simply means that a US visa must be applied for. Therefore, with timely planning, the group can still travel together in the event of an ESTA denial.

Can a group representative submit multiple ESTA group applications at the same time?

The ESTA system only allows one group application to be submitted for up to 50 people. If you wish to submit applications for multiple groups, you must complete and submit them separately.

Is it possible to include travelers of different nationalities on an ESTA group application?

Yes, an ESTA group application may include travelers of different nationalities. Each traveler's nationality and passport information must be provided individually during the application process.

Can an individual traveler change their own application in a group ESTA?

No, once an individual traveler's application has been submitted as part of a group application, they may not amend it independently. Any changes or updates must be made by the group representative or by contacting the processing ESTA agency.

What happens if one person in an ESTA travel group already has a valid ESTA?

If one of the travelers in the group already has a valid ESTA, they can travel with their existing authorization. However, the remaining travelers must still submit a group application.

Who will receive updates on the status of the group ESTA application?

Notifications for all travelers will be sent to the group representative's email address. It is important that you provide a valid email address for communication when you submit your application.

Can the same group representative submit multiple ESTA group applications for different groups?

Yes, a group representative may submit multiple ESTA group applications for different groups. Each application will be reviewed independently, and approval or denial will be based on the individual application details.