Friday, November 8, 2019

Lipinski, Polish Leaders Announce Victory on Visa Waiver Program

Congressman Dan Lipinski (D-3rd) stood with Polish-
American leaders on Friday to announce Poland’s entry into the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP).

Starting November 11, citizens of Poland will be able to apply to travel to the United States for tourism or business purposes for up to 90 days without obtaining a U.S. visa.

The Department of Homeland Security made the determination that Poland had met the requirements for entry into the VWP on November 5. Prior to that, Poland was one of five European Union nations not included in the VWP (despite the fact that US citizens do not need a visa to visit any EU nation).

Under the VWP, citizens of Poland will be able to apply online for authorization to travel to the United States through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).

For most business/tourist travelers, the ESTA application is available online, is estimated to take 20 minutes to complete, costs $14, and usually has an approved/not approved decision within 72 hours. This is much simpler than the visa process, which generally requires an interview at a U.S. Embassy, costs $160 (for a common Business/Tourist type, more for others), and has long processing times.

Video of the press conference:

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