Travelling to and in the USA Advice for inexperienced travellers
Learn about:Documents requiredSafety and securityNatural disastersHealth and Insurance
Documents required You must hold a valid passport to enter the USA. Your passport must be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. US requires all those travelling to provide details online at least 72 hours prior to travel. This is known as an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation or ESTA. This is mandatory. If you do not have an ESTA you will be refused travel to the USA. For more information, and to apply online, please visit the official ESTA website . Travellers requiring visas should apply in the US Embassy or Consulate as early as possible as services will be limited during July and August.
Documents requiredW h a t wil l h a p p e n o n a r r iv a l in t h e US ?U p o n a r r iv a l, a U S C u s t o m s a n d B o r d e r P r o t e c t io n o f f ic e r w ill g u id e y o u t h r o u g h t h e in s p e c t io n p r o c e s s , s o h a v e yo u r tr a v e l d o c u m e n ts r e a d y, s u c h a s p a s s p o r t a n d E S TA .T h e o f f ic e r w ill r e v ie w y o u r t r a v e l d o c u m e n t s a n d a s k q u e s t io n s , s u c h a s w h y y o u a r e v is it in g a n d f o r h o w lo n g .T h e o f f i c e r w i l l s c a n u p t o 10 o f
Documents requiredAre there special considerations for lone parents travelling with children? L o n e p a r e n t s t r a v e llin g w it h c h ild r e n s h o u ld b e a w a r e t h a t s o m e c o u n t r ie s r e q u ir e d o c u m e n t a r y e v id e n c e o f p a r e n t a l r e s p o n s ib ilit y b e f o r e a llo w in g t h e m t r a v e l. F o r f u r t h e r in f o r m a t io n o n r u le s f o r t h e U S p le a s e c o n t a c t th e U S E m b a s s y.My child is included in my passport, is that OK?
Safety and security CrimeYou should bear the following in mind:Do not leave your door open or your belongings unattended at any time .Avoid wearing expensive jewellery and carrying valuable items in poor or very crowded areas.Do not sleep in your car by the roadside or in rest areas.Avoid leaving items on display in cars.Try to stay on main roads and use well-lit car parks.If hit from behind while driving, indicate to the other driver to follow you to a public place and call 911 for Police help.
Safety and security Local Travel - Air TravelAt every US commercial airport you will meet the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Security Officers. Become familiar with the current security measures before flying. Local Travel - Road TravelA valid driving licence is required for each driver. If you have a photo card licence you should remember to also bring the green paper counterpart licence with you. You should also ensure that your car rental insurance covers occupants of your vehicle and any third party claims, including personal injury.You should learn US traffic laws before coming to the country. For example, both the speed and drink driving limits are lower than in many other countries.
Natural disastersThe hurricane season normally runs from June to November and can affect the whole of the southern USA.Tornadoes are found most frequently in the United States east of the Rocky Mountains during the spring and summer months. In the southern states, peak tornado occurrence is in March through May, while peak months in the northern states are during the summer. To learn more about tornadoes and what you should do during, and after an event.Snow storms during winter can cause delays and cancellations throughout the major airline hubs in the USA. Be sure to contact your tour operator or airline for current flight information before travelling.You must also remember that in the West Coast of the United States of America, (including Hawaii and Alaska) and Puerto Rico, earthquakes are frequent.
Health and InsuranceHealthMedical treatment can be very expensive. Embassies and Consulates in general cannot assist you with medical expenses. You should ensure that you have comprehensive medical insurance, which includes hospital treatment and medical evacuation to your country. You should seek medical advice before travelling to the USA and ensure that all appropriate vaccinations are up-to- date.InsuranceComprehensive travel and medical insurance is essential; at least $1,000,000 cover, which includes hospital treatment and medical evacuation to your country, is recommended. You should check any exclusions, and that your policy covers you for all the activities you intend to do.
… and, last but not least, PRACTICE YOUR ENGLISH!!!Have a nice trip!