On this page, you will find the information you need to easily make your way through Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport and to your destination.
Arrival and departure terminal maps and information for Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport.
Carry-on luggage may be inspected.
Some travelers are eligible for Fast Track Security Screening. Travelers should look for Gold Track signs.
Please pass through the security check and proceed to the departure gate.
There is no need for passengers who are entering Houston Intercontinental Airport (IAH) on ANA flight to/from Houston (NH173/NH174) and connecting to/from a United Airlines international flight to pick up baggage at Houston (IAH). Please proceed to the exit of Customs after U.S. Immigration process.
If you’re connecting from NH174 to United Airlines international flights, you will receive an information card at the arrival gate. Please show that information card to the U.S. Customs officer.
If you’re connecting from United Airlines international flights to NH173, please contact United Airlines ground staff if you have any concerns. For details, see Through Check-in to a Partner Airline's Flight.
On September 27th, 2019 (JST) current information.
Furthermore, the details under "Visa", "Passport" and "Note When you travel to the United States" are for Japanese nationals.
This information is likely to change suddenly, so please contact the relevant official authority (e.g., embassy) for the latest information.
No visa is usually required for tourism or business trips within ninety days. However, entry to the US is often denied for those entering and exiting frequently, or those staying in the US for a long time. Those traveling with a visa waiver must obtain electronic travel authorization from ESTA (excluding entry by land).
It is preferable to have a passport that is valid for at least 90 days from the date of entry.
The Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) was introduced in 2009 for those wishing to travel to the United States without a visa. To use this system, you must apply for travel authorization in advance. Applications must be submitted at least 72 hours before departure on the official ESTA website(https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/). Follow the procedure in Japanese, and enter the applicant information, passport information, travel information, address during your stay in the United States (e.g. your hotel), and other details in the roman alphabet. The application fee is $14. You can pay by American Express, MasterCard, VISA, or other credit card. Valid for two years from the completion of registration (except if your passport is lost)
Starting April 1, 2016, everyone traveling to the US without a visa must have an e-Passport (IC passport). This rule also applies to visitors with a valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). If you are traveling to the US with a visa waiver, you must confirm that your passport is an e-Passport (IC passport). Visa Waiver Program.
The Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act was enacted on January 21, 2016. According to this act, the following individuals cannot travel to the US on the visa waiver program (VMP).
These individuals must apply for a visa. Travelers may be eligible for a visa waiver with case-by-case screening if the purpose of travel was official business for an international organization, news reporting by a journalist, or legitimate business activities. Please check with the US Embassy or Consulate for details. Visas, Visa Waiver Program.
When visiting from Japan, it is prohibited to bring the following items into the United States.
The scope for tax exemption is 200 cigarettes, same as for regular cigarettes.
The US Department of Homeland Security Customs and Border Protection (CBP) strongly recommends that those under 18 entering the US unaccompanied or accompanied by one parent or another individual who is not a parent or legal guardian have an English document signed by both parents or the parent who is not accompanying the minor.
For travelers who are 21 or older, tax is exempt for 1 L of alcohol for personal consumption or gifts up to $100 in value. Tax is exempt for up to 200 cigarettes (or 50 cigars or 2 kg for cut tobacco). All food products containing vegetables, fruit, meat, or meat extracts are not allowed to be brought into the country.
There are four time zones in mainland U.S. Houston is in the Central Time Zone (CST) and is 15 hours behind Japan. (It is 9PM the previous day in Houston when it is noon in Japan.) In summer, almost all states use Daylight Saving Time (summertime) and the clocks move forward an hour. The time difference between Japan and Houston becomes an hour shorter. Daylight Saving Time is from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November. When traveling, be careful of the changes in the time difference.
Houston in southeast Texas is classified as a humid subtropical climate according to Köppen climate classification. It is classified as subtropical as it is affected by heat waves from Mexico and the sea breeze including humidity blowing over from the Gulf of Mexico. The seasons generally feel like a long summer and short winter. In any season, when the temperature rises, air conditions are turned on high indoors. Jackets are essential. Be careful when visiting during hurricane season from June to November.
The unit of currency is dollars ($) and cents (¢). $1 is JPY105.98 (as of September 4, 2019). There are six denominations of banknotes: $1, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100. Note that many smaller shops do not accept $50 or $100 bills. There are six types of coins: 1¢, 5¢, 10¢, 25¢, 50¢, and 100¢ (100¢ is $1), but the 50¢, and 100¢ coins are not widely distributed.
US banknotes and coins
There is a sales tax applied when making purchases and a hotel tax applied when staying at hotels. The rate (%) varies with the state or city. When eating at a restaurant, you will also be charged tax that is equal to or higher than the sales tax. There is no sales tax in certain places like Portland, Oregon and Montana, and states like Lousiana and Texas have a tax refund system for overseas travelers.
It is customary to tip when receiving any type of service, for example at restaurants, in taxis, or when staying at hotels (e.g. to the bellhop or housekeeping staff). The amount differs depending on whether a special request was made or the level of satisfaction with the service, but the following values serve as references.
The voltage is 120 V. Plugs are three-pin. Although Japanese products with 100 V, two-pin plugs can be used as is, it should be noted that there is a minor voltage difference. Extended use of appliances such as hair dryers or chargers may result in overheating, so special measures should be taken, such as breaking up usage into shorter durations of time.
Airmail to Japan is $1.15 for letters and postcards. There are some postal methods with a set rate for using a specified envelope or box.
Hours vary slightly between towns/cities. Post offices are generally open from around 9:00 to 17:00 on weekdays. Postal boxes are blue. Mail designated as EXPRESS MAIL is only express for domestic deliveries.
Ex. When calling (03) 1234-5678:
Ex. When calling Los Angeles (213) 123-456:
Note that some states have different holidays. Shops that claim to be open year-round are almost always closed on New Year's Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day. Also, many stores have different hours during the summer holidays from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Mostly English, although it is not the law. Spanish is used in many places across the US.
Below are guidelines for general business hours. Hours vary with the type of business and location. Supermarkets are open either 24-hours a day or 22-hours. It is not rare for stores to close at around 19:00 in urban business districts.
Mon. to Fri. 9:00 to 17:00.
Mon. to Fri. 10:00 to 20:00, Sat. 10:00 to 19:00, Sun. 11:00 to 18:00.
Coffee shops and other cafes are open from the morning. Breakfast is from 7:00 to 10:00, lunch from 11:30 to 14:30, and dinner from 17:30 to 22:00. Bars are open until late at night.
Although it varies by state, the drinking age is generally 21. Some places require you to show ID when buying alcohol. ID is also required at clubs and other places that serve alcohol. In the US, there is a very high rate of car accidents among younger drivers, and, with very few exceptions, almost all major car rental companies do not rent cars to people under 25. Extra fees are often required for drivers between the age of 21 and 24.
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Passengers traveling to the United States from abroad must provide passport information and the documents listed here that are required for entering the United States.
Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA):
Passengers are required to obtain pre-travel authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) to enter the USA under the Visa Waiver Program (see below).
Secure Flight Program:
The Secure Flight Program requires passengers to provide their passport name, date of birth and gender at least 72 hours prior to departure or at the time of booking if the reservation is made inside the 72-hour window.
The U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP) enables most nationals of participating countries to travel to the United States for tourism or business for 90 days or less without obtaining a visa.
Travelers must have a valid ESTA approval prior to travel and must meet all requirements for the program.
VWP Participating Countries
Recent VWP Changes
Recent changes to the Visa Waiver Program prohibit the following customers from travelling under VWP; such passengers must apply for a non-immigrant visa.
A waiver may be obtained on a case-by-case basis for those who have traveled to the areas mentioned above for official duties of an international organization, regional organizations or sub-national government; journalists for reporting purposes; and legitimate business-related purposes in Iran and Iraq. Please contact your nearest U.S. embassy or consulate for waiver information.
The U.S. Transportation Security Administration requires that all passengers provide the following information at least 72 hours before departure to the United States.
The U.S. has recently enhanced its security measures to include security checks of some electronic devices on flights bound to the US. Some electronic devices must undergo security check at the boarding gate based on TSA regulations.