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Visa for Atlantic City, New Jersey USA

Updated: Aug 24, 2023  | Tags: ESTA, USA Visa

Information on visiting Atlantic City and applying for an ESTA or visa.


Atlantic City, New Jersey, often referred to as the "East Coast's gaming capital," has much more to offer than just casinos and nightlife. From the iconic Boardwalk to world-class entertainment and rich history, this oceanfront city has a variety of attractions that make it a sought-after destination for tourists from around the globe. But before you can enjoy all the city has to offer, there's an essential step to take: securing your travel authorization to enter the United States. This article will guide you through the process of applying for either an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) or a visa to visit Atlantic City and also give you an overview of its main attractions.

Familiarizing yourself with ESTA and U.S. Visas

When travelling abroad, it is vital to have your paperwork in order, especially if you need a visa for Atlantic City. No matter which country you are from you will require either a visa or an ESTA for visiting the United States. The last thing anyone wants is a deportation on their record. If you apply for the wrong one you can end up costing yourself a great deal of time, money, and stress. The good news is that the difference between ESTA and visa is easy to figure out.

What is the difference between ESTA and a U.S. visa? They are both documents that allow you to enter the United States. The ESTA is available if you are from one of the 41 Visa Waiver Countries, and can be applied for online. You will need a machine readable or electronic passport. In addition to your passport details, you must supply various pieces of personal information such as your address, and answer various questions. The ESTA application can take up to 72 hours to process, but it is recommended that you apply 3 to 6 months in advance. This is because if your ESTA is denied you will have to apply for a visa for Atlantic City.

ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization)

If you hail from one of the 41 countries in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), you can take advantage of the ESTA process, which is generally quicker and easier than applying for a visa.

How to Apply for an ESTA:

  1. Fill Out the Application Form: The online application is straightforward and usually takes about 20 minutes. You'll need details like your passport number, personal information, and some background history.
  2. Pay the Fee: Pay the required government fee to submit your application.
  3. Await Approval: Approvals are often instant but can take up to 72 hours. It's best to apply a few days before your intended travel.

An ESTA allows multiple entries into the U.S. for up to 90 days per visit and is valid for two years or until your passport expires. Note that an ESTA does not permit employment in the U.S.


If your ESTA is denied or you are not from one of the 41 Visa Waiver Countries what do you need to do? You must schedule an appointment at a US embassy. To do this, you will need to find and fill out an application form called a DS-160. You then must pay the visa application fee. Once your appointment has been scheduled you will need to bring your passport, the DS-160 confirmation letter, the appointment confirmation, and a photograph of the applicant.

How to Apply for a Visa:

  1. Determine the Type of Visa: Tourists typically apply for a B-2 tourist visa or B-1 business visa.
  2. Complete the DS-160 Form: This online form will ask for a variety of personal and travel-related information.
  3. Pay the Application Fee: This fee is usually around $185.
  4. Schedule an Interview: After fee payment, you will schedule an interview at your local U.S. embassy or consulate.
  5. Attend the Interview: Come prepared with all the necessary documents. Depending on your circumstances, you may need to provide additional information or undergo further screening.
  6. Await Approval: If approved, your visa will be issued and affixed to your passport.

Visa processing can take several weeks, so it's advisable to start the application process well in advance of your trip.

Main Attractions in Atlantic City

With your ESTA or visa secured, let's dive into what makes Atlantic City a fantastic travel destination:

The Boardwalk

The Atlantic City Boardwalk is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the U.S. Built in 1870, it was the first boardwalk in America and remains a popular attraction. It’s the perfect place for a leisurely stroll, bike ride, or a shopping spree.


Atlantic City is often compared to Las Vegas for its bustling casino scene. Famous spots like the Borgata, Tropicana, and Caesars offer a full range of gaming options along with entertainment shows, fine dining, and more.

Atlantic City Beach

Unlike many casino destinations, Atlantic City also offers a beach where you can relax and soak up the sun. Water sports such as surfing and kayaking are also available for the more adventurous.

The Steel Pier

This historic amusement park is another must-visit spot in Atlantic City. Offering rides and games for both children and adults, it's a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening.

Absecon Lighthouse

One of the oldest lighthouses in the country, the Absecon Lighthouse offers stunning views of the Atlantic City skyline. The 228 steps to the top are worth the climb!

The Quarter at Tropicana

If you're interested in shopping, dining, or nightlife, The Quarter at the Tropicana is a hub of activity. Styled to resemble Old Havana, the area offers a unique and diverse range of options.

Art Installations and Museums

Atlantic City is home to some exciting art installations and museums, including the Atlantic City Art Center, the African American Heritage Museum of Southern New Jersey, and the Ripley's Believe It or Not! museum.


Atlantic City is a diverse and vibrant destination offering a mix of entertainment, history, and relaxation. Whether you're interested in hitting the casinos or enjoying the seaside attractions, there's something for everyone in this iconic American city. However, the first step to any successful trip is ensuring you have the right travel authorization.

Residents of Visa Waiver Program countries can opt for the simpler ESTA process, while others will need to apply for a visa. Whichever path you take, make sure to start the process well in advance of your travel dates to ensure a smooth and enjoyable visit to Atlantic City. With your travel documents in hand, you’ll be well-prepared to explore all that this exciting destination has to offer.