Monthly Feature – November’s Most Popular Question is…

Are there any restrictions on items I can send or bring into the U.S. during the holiday season? 

It’s a great question, and one we get asked a lot at this time of year.  If you’re thinking of sending family or friends a cake or pudding to mark the holiday season, visit the U.S. Customs and Border website here before you make your purchase.

A picture of a Christmas pudding
Photo by James Peek – https://www.flickr.com/photos/whodini/5138903

If you are planning on delivering your gifts in person, the regulations differ – check them here.  Avoid disappointment and check to make sure you are eligible to travel too!

If you have not already done so, check the requirements for travel under the  Visa Waiver Program and if qualified, make sure that you have valid travel authorization under ESTA.  If you have a nonimmigrant visa, check the validity.  The visa only needs to be valid at the time you apply for admission into the United States and not for the duration of your stay. U.S. Immigration at the Port of Entry will determine how long you may remain.

If you need to apply for a visa, visit the Embassy website – http://london.usembassy.gov/niv/apply.html for information.  The Embassy cannot guarantee that a visa will be issued to any applicant by a specific date, so we strongly recommend that you don’t book final travel plans until your application has been fully processed and you have the visa in hand.