As of this month, visitors to the United States who don’t require a visa must fill out a Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). No one seems to like ESTA, which some have called costly to the US tourism industry and others believe is unnecessary. But has anyone bothered to take the look at the actual questions on the form?

Before I share those with you, I should note the Department of Homeland Security is running this show. I hate to pile on DHS after my little run-in with them over the New Years holiday, but you can’t make this stuff up. (These queries don’t appear to be new, for the most part, but they are being encountered by many international visitors for the first time.)

Here are the questions:

Do any of the following apply to you? (Answer Yes or No)

A) Do you have a communicable disease; physical or mental disorder; or are you a drug abuser or addict? 

B) Have you ever been arrested or convicted for an offense or crime involving moral turpitude or a violation related to a controlled substance; or have been arrested or convicted for two or more offenses for which the aggregate sentence to confinement was five years or more; or have been a controlled substance trafficker; or are you seeking entry to engage in criminal or immoral activities?

C) Have you ever been or are you now involved in espionage or sabotage; or in terrorist activities; or genocide; or between 1933 and 1945 were you involved, in any way, in persecutions associated with Nazi Germany or its allies?

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  • Elliott

    Christopher Elliott has been called one of the world’s leading travel experts. But his focus isn’t on the destination, or ev…

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