Travellers visiting the United States for business or pleasure may be eligible to be admitted for 90 days under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Travellers who wish to work (including those undertaking journalism assignments), study, or stay for more than 90 days are not eligible for the VWP and must obtain a visa before travelling. All travellers entering the United States under the VWP must have a machine-readable passport. Passports that do not have two lines of 44 characters at the bottom of the personal particulars page of their passport are not machine-readable. Under the US-VISIT program most visitors to the United States, including those seeking entry under the VWP, are required to have fingerprints scanned by an inkless device and to have a digital photograph taken on arrival. All ports of entry use US-VISIT, but as yet not all ports of departure. The United States Department of Homeland Securitys website provides updates on which ports of departure have US-VISIT available to use. Visitors leaving the United States by a departure port that has US-VISIT must register their departure by using one of the self-service kiosks. Visitors are lawfully present in the United States only up to the date stamped on their white or green arrival card (I-94 or I-94W) not the expiration date printed on the visa. Travellers should note that visitors staying beyond the 90-day VWP limit or beyond the date stamped on their arrival card may be arrested and detained for up to seven weeks or more, deported and likely barred from re-entering the United States, possibly for life. This program applies only to citizens of a limited group of countries. First, make sure your country of citizenship is on this list:

· Andorra · Argentina · Australia · Austria · Belgium · Brunei · Denmark · Finland · France · Germany · Iceland · Ireland · Italy · Japan · Liechtenstein · Luxembourg · Monaco · Netherlands · New Zealand · Norway · Portugal · San Marino · Singapore · Slovenia · Spain · Sweden · Switzerland · United Kingdom · Uruguay

Since this program is new, some countries have only recently been added and more may be in the future. Check with your own country’s consulate or your local U.S. embassy to see whether your country participates in this program. For more information check out the US State Department Travel Page