Back in May when we left Australia on our epic adventure, we ran into some dramas with Hawaiian airlines. They wouldn't issue our airline tickets without evidence of a departing flight from the States. We didn't have this evidence as our initial plan was to overland through Mexico.
Regardless of how many times we check the immigration regulations of the countries we are visiting or exiting, the information seems to be a little different when we actually get there. We hope these NEW blog entries offering our experiences on border crossings will help other Aussies on their travels also.
So let's begin at the start.
To enter the United States of America as a tourist, we qualified for the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA). To see if you are eligible or to complete an application for entry into the USA visit; https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/. Applications cost USD $14.00 per person and are valid for 90 days from when you enter the country.
Under the terms and conditions of ESTA you must leave the USA, Canada, Mexico & the Caribbean within those 90 days.
From Australia to the USA, we flew with Hawaiian Airlines from Sydney, Australia to Las Vegas, USA. Our flights, including a stopover in Hawaii, were AUD $1088 per person. For the airline to issue your plane ticket, you must have evidence of ongoing travel. In this instance you will need to fly as a land crossing into Mexico (in our case) will not stamp your passport proving you exited the country within the given timeframe.
We chose to fly to Guatemala City from Los Angeles (AUD $234.45 per person) and then travel backwards into Mexico.
To read more about our experience, check out our blog post; http://www.globalrunaways.com/runaway-to/usa-visas-for-aussies
The information on this page is solely based on our personal experiences during International Border Crossings, most of which have been overland. We highly recommend checking all advice against the respective countries own immigration website for up to date information.