01Aug2015

Tightroping the USA

What seems like a very bizarre sport to some has made news this week, as daredevil Nik Wallenda completed his longest tightrope walk ever at the Wisconsin State Fair. The 36-year-old acrobat comes from a long line of tightrope walkers, with six generations before him participating in the same, nail-biting activity.

Wallenda walked along 480 metres, suspended ten stories in the air. Having already walked across Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon, and between skyscrapers in Chicago, the…

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01Aug2015

Visit the beautiful Puerto Rico with the ESTA

Perhaps not everyone is aware that, along with an electronic passport, we brits require an ESTA, Electronic System for Travel Authorisation, to travel to the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico.

In fact, Puerto Rico (or rather the archipelago of Puerto Rico, made up of the main island and many other, smaller islands) is a non-incorporated territory of the United States, officially called the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, which allows self-government. This means that Puerto Rico enjoys…

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01Aug2015

Washington D.C. welcomes two furry new residents

Although not native to the USA, a zoo in Washington DC has welcome two new giant panda cubs into its population; and they required neither a visa nor an ESTA!

Unlike the UK, China do not currently form part of the Visa Waiver Programme. Nevertheless, the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington DC was home to the birth of two panda cubs last week, parented by giant pandas on loan from China. 

The news is particularly exciting…

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01Jul2015

Air travel to resume between the USA and Cuba

On July 20th, Washington DC and Havana will open embassies and restore full diplomatic relations between the USA and Cuba. Consequently, airlines and ship routes between both countries will be restored.

Since 1961, relations between the two countries have been turbulent, and their diplomatic missions have had to be conducted under the legal protection of Switzerland. Since ties were severed 54 years ago, after the USA imposed a trade embargo on Cuba, it has been notoriously difficult for…

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01Jul2015

Passport requirements when travelling with ESTA

The ESTA allows UK citizens to travel to the USA under the ‘Visa Waiver Programme’, eliminating the need to obtain a visa for trips to the USA for periods of 90 days or less. Nevertheless, there are a few passport requirements to bear in mind before applying for ESTA online.

First and foremost, it is essential that your passport is valid and does not expire during the validity of your ESTA (which is two years). As soon

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01Jul2015

Camping in USA

Those who travel to the USA are often nature lovers and those who enjoy wide, open scenery. One of the best ways to discover the USA up-close is by taking a camping trip!

Camping trips are very familiar to American culture. Almost every American went camping as a child, and the country has plenty on offer for everyone. 

So, camping can refer to two things; first of all, we have traditional camping in tents, and then…

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01Jul2015

Change your perception of flying to the USA

The journey between the UK and the USA may seem like a long one, with flights tending to stretch from seven to 12 hours, however this week marks a couple of events that may alter your perception. 

On 14th July, flying at 14km per second (around 57 times faster than the average speed of a transatlantic flight), the ‘New Horizons’ Spacecraft made a flying visit past our solar system’s distant icy world of Pluto. What was…

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01Jul2015

What to do if you lose your ESTA identification number

When you apply for ESTA online, the status of your application will be sent to you digitally within 24 hours. An approved application status will come with a personal reference number, which is specific to your ESTA.

Many travellers choose to print out this email, or take a note of the reference number provided. A print-out is not necessary, but having the reference number to hand should it be needed can prove very useful.

Nevertheless, if…

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01Jun2015

Another rise in airport security expected in the USA

If you’re planning a trip to the USA soon, don’t be surprised if security measures are more thorough than normal.

This expected boost of security is not due to a change in threat levels, and there’s no need to worry if you are searched or questioned. Rather, these efforts come following an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security. The DHS recently ran some undercover tests across 70 airports across the country, to ensure that procedure was being…

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01Jun2015

Relax during your flight to the US

Traveling to distant destinations is a dream that many of us share, but reaching these places means facing long hours of air travel that can be stressful and tiring, as well as nightmarish for those who are afraid of flying.

Getting to the United States from Europe involves many hours on board a plane, but with these bits of advice, the journey will "fly by", allowing you to arrive at your destination refreshed and ready for a wonderful…

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01Jun2015

Renewing your ESTA

The ESTA is the perfect way to travel to the USA without having to request a visa from the US embassy. Here, we will explain what you need to do in order to renew your ESTA once it expires.

When you receive your ESTA authorisation, which is sent to you digitally within 24 hours of your request, you are granted travel to the USA for tourism or business purposes during a period of two years. Each individual…

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01Jun2015

Holiday rental homes closing down in Santa Monica

Holiday homes have long been an excellent way of exploring a new place whilst avoiding hotel prices, but has this luxurious Los Angeles neighbourhood taken a step back?  

When British citizens visit the USA, we now opt more and more for holiday apartments or houses instead of hotels. In fact, the whole travel process is easier and less stressful than it used to be. Flights are more affordable and frequent, and as part of the Visa Waiver Programme…

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01Jun2015

The 4th of July - the most patriotic event in the USA

For the past 239 years there has been one day each year when every American pauses to commemorate thier homeland; a day when national pride pumps through the hearts of every citizen. On this day, the country dresses in stars and stripes, and it’s hard to find any open space that doesn’t smell of barbecues! Of course, we are talking about The Fourth of July, or Independence Day.

But what makes this date so important?

To…

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01Jun2015

Using your ESTA once you’ve ordered it

The ESTA is the golden ticket that allows citizens of countries belonging to the ‘Visa Waiver Programme’ to travel to the USA for tourism or business purposes without the need for a visa (and that includes the UK!).

In times gone by, hopeful travellers would have had to request an interview with the US embassy to be considered for a visa, which unsurprisingly entailed endless red tape and expenses. The ESTA, on the other hand, is both ordered…

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01May2015

The long Memorial Day weekend

We know that the United States is a very patriotic country and that celebrations recalling important historical events are held in high regard: Memorial Day is one of these occasions and takes place on the last Monday of May.

It’s an event that remembers the men killed in war, and which dates back to the American Civil War (1861-64), when citizens began to place flowers on the graves of their fallen soldiers.

The Civil War saw…

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