Israel Added to Visa Waiver Program November 30, 2023
Author: Rachel Refkin
On September 27, 2023, the Department of State and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) jointly announced the designation of Israel into the Visa Waiver Program.
- As of November 30, 2023, citizens and nationals of Israel may travel to the U.S. for business or tourism for up to 90 days without a visa if they obtain ESTA authorization.
- The Visa Waiver Program allows nationals from a select group of U.S. security partner countries to travel to the U.S. without a visa for up to 90 days to encourage commerce and tourism.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR EMPLOYERS AND FOREIGN NATIONALS:
- Effective November 30, Israeli citizens and nationals who obtain an ESTA clearance may travel to the U.S. for up to 90 days for business or tourism without first obtaining a visa.
- ESTA authorization for travel is generally valid for up to two years.
- Israeli citizens and nationals who hold valid B-1/B-2 visas may continue to use their valid visas for both business and tourism travel to the United States.
- ESTA travel authorization does not guarantee admission into the United States. All non-citizens traveling through the Visa Waiver Program are still subject to grounds of inadmissibility and inspection by U.S. Customs and Border Protection to ensure their intended visit is consistent with business or personal tourism.
The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee has filed a lawsuit challenging Israel’s admission to the Visa Waiver Program. As of September 26, 2023, a federal district court in Michigan has denied a motion requesting a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction that would have prevented Israel’s admission. Gibney is following the litigation and will provide updates accordingly.
Additional information about the Visa Waiver Program and ESTA clearance is available here.
If you have any questions about this alert, please contact your designated Gibney representative or email email@example.com.