5 Things to know before you travel to America

5 Things to know before you travel to America

Other then of course your tickets, money and your passport you need so much more when you’re traveling. Your essential USA travel checklist can be found here together with the 5 Things to know before you travel to America.

Because I’m traveling to America within a couple of weeks, I thought I would share my tips and tricks to help make your travels safer and smoother. America is one of the busiest and most popular destinations for travelers, so hopefully, you’ll find my tips helpful.

5 Things to know before you travel to America

  • Check Your Passport Validity
  • Get Your ESTA or Visa
  • Pack Like a Pro
  • Vaccinations, Insurance, and Medication
  • Getting Around (Prepare, Eat, Sleep, Repeat)

Passport | 1

Is your passport up to date? This is a crucial question to ask. If you’re European, your first answer might be yes, but think twice. For most travelers heading to the States, your passport’s validity should be at least six months beyond your planned stay. However, this requirement can vary, so make sure to double-check. Also, if you need a new passport, reserve enough time as this process can take more than five workdays.

ESTA or VISA | 2

Especially for my European readers, this is a must-read. For most countries outside Europe, you’ll need a visa or ESTA.

What is a visa? A visa is an official document that allows you to enter and stay in a country for a limited or unlimited time. This can be in the form of a document, stamp, or sticker in your passport.

Visa or ESTA? If you want to travel to America like me, you’ll need an ESTA. Whether you’re visiting for work, transfer, or a well-deserved vacation, an ESTA is required. Without an ESTA, you’ll be refused entry at the airport. This requirement also applies to minor children. Applying for an ESTA can be done online, making it a more convenient and cost-effective option compared to a visa.

Validity: After being granted, your ESTA is valid for two years, allowing you to make multiple trips to America within that period. Each stay can last up to 90 days. Traveling to the Caribbean, Mexico, or Canada is also an option with an ESTA.

4 Rules You Should Know Before Applying:

  1. You must be able to prove that you plan to leave the US by providing a return ticket.
  2. You need an ESTA for Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Guam, The Virgin Islands, and the Northern Mariana Islands.
  3. People deemed a threat to security or public order can be banned by Homeland Security.
  4. If you have traveled to Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Yemen, Libya, or Somalia after March 2011, or hold their nationality, you cannot apply for an ESTA.

There are many ways to apply for an ESTA, either on the official American Government website or through professional agencies like VisumBuitenland.nl, which offer support and manual application checks for a hassle-free process.

Pack like a pro | 3

Still something we have to master ourselves, packing like a pro. But we’re getting there. Soon we will write a guide on what to pack on trips, because that’s one of the most asked questions. One of the best tips there is, is rolling your clothes. Especially if you pack light fabrics that easily fold this is the best way. It will also save you space and time. Other things we’re a big fan of are packing bags. If you travel to the US also make sure to buy a TSA-approved lock. Also make sure to buy a power strip which will come in handy in many countries and hotel rooms with only one or two outlets. Buying one of those is a must on this 5 Things to know before you travel to America list.

Vaccinations, insurance, medication | 4

Make sure to pack your medication, if your using it and make sure to take extra just incase something happens with it. Also make sure your insurance is up to date and aware of your future travel plans. This is something very boring to do, but can save you a lot of time and money if something happens. Also for some regions you could need vaccinations, make sure you check this with your local doctor.

5 Things to know before you travel to America

Getting around, (prepare, eat, sleep, repeat) | 5 | Things to know before you travel to America

Download apps like Google Maps & Translating apps. If your not speaking the language or visiting a place for the first time these are essentials. Use the option Lens to translate signs, menus and other things you need translated. Always read in the culture and make sure you’re aware of the basic things you need to know.

5 Things to know before you travel to America

If you have any questions about this article ‘5 Things to know before you travel to America‘ or have some things to add, feel free to comment down below. If you want to know more about our travel plans, read more here.

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10 Comments

  1. March 23, 2019 / 10:07 am

    We hebben als Babymoon 2 weken door Amerika gereisd. Als de meiden een beetje ouder zijn, dan doen we het zeker nog een keertje over

  2. March 21, 2019 / 6:58 pm

    Handige tips! Zelf ben ik afgelopen zomer voor het eerst naar Amerika geweest en zou graag zo snel mogelijk weer terug gaan! 🙂

  3. March 21, 2019 / 5:15 pm

    So many things you have to think of and would be best to do it all on time too 🙂

  4. March 20, 2019 / 9:52 am

    ik wil nog steeds graag een keertje naar Amerika. Het grappig is dat het laaste waar je aan denkt het visum is. Goed om te weten en zeker handig om op tijd en van tevoren te regelen.

  5. Lipstickencupcakes
    March 20, 2019 / 8:38 am

    Ik wist helemaal niet dat je een ESTA nodig had. Fijn om te weten, wij willen dit najaar naar Amerika.

  6. March 20, 2019 / 7:08 am

    Op zich tips die voor vele landen tellen, ik ben al zo vaak naar Amerika geweest en het gaat altijd erg goed met vliegen, ook met medicatie. Belangrijk is dat je een adres hebt, waar je heen gaat, aangezien je deze op je formulieren in moet vullen in het vliegtuig en vlieg niet via Chigago, want dan ben je je bagage tijdelijk kwijt , dit is mij een paar keer overkomen 🙁

  7. March 20, 2019 / 5:51 am

    Thanks for these tips, Lisa! I have always wanted to go to America, and now I know how to prepare =D

  8. March 19, 2019 / 7:48 am

    Dankjewel voor de handige informatie! Als ik ooit naar de VS ga weet ik wat ik moet doen!

  9. March 19, 2019 / 6:45 am

    Amerika heeft een warme plek in mijn hart aangezien mijn jongste 3 kinderen er geboren zijn.
    Komende zomer zullen we er een roadtrip maken door Florida. Ik tel de dagen nu al af

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