Travelling to Mississippi
All travellers visiting the US with a visa under the terms of the Visa Waiver Program are required to have an individual machine-readable passport.
Detailed information, including a step by step guide to determine your eligibility for the Visa Waiver Program is available on the US Embassy’s website at London.usembassy.gov or call the information line on 09402 450100 (£1.20 per minute from BT Landlines, calls from mobiles and other network providers may vary) or call a recorded information line on 0906 820 0290 (60p per minute).
Most citizens of 35 countries, including the UK travelling on their national passports with at least 90 days validity from the date of entry into the US, for business or tourism for 90 days of less, are eligible to travel visa free under the Visa Waiver Program provided they meet certain conditions.
Before going online to register, you need to ensure that you are qualified to travel under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) otherwise your registration will be rejected. It also does not guarantee entry into the US; that decision rests with the immigration official at the point of entry in the same way travellers currently entering the US under the Visa Waiver Program or with a visa are subject to inspection. Full details about ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation) and the registration process can be found on the Embassy’s website, longon.usembassy.gov. Online application forms are available at https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov.
Electricity – 110/120 volts AC, 60 cycles. Flat, two-pin plugs are used.
Insurance – There is no agreement between the US and the UK for medical or hospital care. There is no equivalent to the National Health Service and medical expenses are very high. Medical insurance is strongly recommended. Anyone renting a car is also urged to take out comprehensive insurance as litigation claims are extremely common in the US and payments are high.
Money – All major credit cards are accepted throughout the US. When hiring a car or booking a hotel an imprint of a credit card is usually taken in advance to cover extras. Travellers cheques in US dollars are recommended. If these are carried, they will be accepted as cash in most restaurants, hotels and shops. It is recommended to arrive in the US with about $100 in cash, including one dollar bills for tipping and paying taxis.
Tipping – In America tipping is a common and expected practice. Suggested tips are 10-20% of the bill for meals in restaurants and the same to taxi drivers. About $1 per bag or suitcase carried by bellboys or porters at hotels or airports is the norm. If going on an escorted tour, check beforehand whether tips are included. If not, the tour guide and others will expect at tip.
USA Public Holidays 2010
New Years Day 2010: Friday Jan 1
Martin Luther King Day: Monday Jan 18
Presidents Day: Monday Feb 15
Memorial Day: Monday May 31
Independence Day: Monday July 5
Labour Day: Monday Sept 6
Columbus Day: Monday Oct 11
Veterans Day: Thursday Nov 11
Thanksgiving Day: Thursday Nov 25
Christmas Eve: Thursday Dec 24