I'm planning on visiting US for a work trip but have had my US passport stolen from the car. I am curious on whether one can save the $300+ on a US passport by applying for an ESTA visa to enter the US instead of using a US passport?

I am a US and NZ citizen. I normally hold both passports but both have been stolen from a car break in.


You need a VWP-eligible passport to apply for ESTA, but you write

I am a US and NZ citizen. I normally hold both passports but both have been stolen from a car break in.

Since you don't have your New Zealand passport, you cannot apply for ESTA.

(Actually, you can apply for it with only the passport number, but if the passport has been reported stolen then the ESTA will surely be denied. If the passport has not been reported stolen, and the ESTA is granted, you still won't be able to travel to the US because you'd need the NZ passport got the actual trip, but you don't have it.)

The current US passport fee is USD 110, by the way.

  • I always would have to replace the NZ passport to have one to travel and enter NZ with. But you are right, waiting for my NZ passport to arrive then applying for the ESTA could take some time. Thanks for your help – Jesse Reza Khorasanee Apr 25 '19 at 21:39

You can't apply for an ESTA

I am a U.S. Citizen with dual citizenship in a VWP country?

U.S. Citizens are not required to have an ESTA and are required to use their U.S. passport to travel to the U.S.


  • 6
    Despite what that page says, there is no law preventing ESTA authorization from being granted to a US citizen, and there are multiple reports here of US dual citizens getting ESTA with their VWP-eligible non-US passports. CBP even used to have a page acknowledging this as a possibility in emergency situations. – phoog Apr 24 '19 at 8:33

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