Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is one of the busiest airports in the world serving as a major hub for travelers from all around the globe. Due to its central location and connectivity many passengers often find themselves with long layovers at LAX. If you are one of those passengers wondering whether you can leave the airport during a long layover this article is for you.
Transit Without Visa Program
If you are a citizen of a country that is eligible for the Transit Without Visa (TWOV) program you can leave the airport and explore Los Angeles during your layover. The TWOV program allows passengers to transit through the United States for up to 24 hours without a visa as long as they meet certain criteria. This program is particularly beneficial for travelers with long layovers who wish to make the most of their time and explore the city.
Eligibility for TWOV Program
To be eligible for the TWOV program the following criteria must be met:
- Your final destination should be outside of the United States.
- You must hold a valid passport from a country eligible for the TWOV program.
- You must have a valid onward ticket for your journey.
- Your layover in the United States should not exceed 24 hours.
It is important to note that not all countries are eligible for the TWOV program. The United States Customs and Border Protection website provides a list of countries that qualify for the program. Make sure to check before planning your layover activities.
Leaving the Airport
If you meet the criteria for the TWOV program and wish to leave the airport during your layover you will need to go through the standard immigration and customs procedures. Upon arrival at LAX follow the signs for “Arrivals” and proceed to the immigration area. There you will need to present your passport and completed customs declaration form.
After passing through immigration and customs you are free to explore Los Angeles. Keep in mind that you will need to go through security screening again when you return to the airport.
Once you have left the airport there are several transportation options available to help you explore the city.
- Public Transportation: Los Angeles has an extensive public transportation system including buses and trains. The Metro Rail system can take you to popular destinations such as downtown Los Angeles Hollywood and Santa Monica.
- Taxis and Rideshares: Taxis and rideshare services like Uber and Lyft are readily available at the airport. They provide convenient and reliable transportation to various attractions in the city.
- Rental Cars: If you prefer to have more flexibility and independence you can opt to rent a car from one of the many rental car companies located near the airport. This allows you to explore Los Angeles at your own pace.
Things to Do in Los Angeles
Los Angeles offers a wide range of attractions and activities to keep you entertained during your layover. Some popular options include:
- Hollywood: Visit the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame the TCL Chinese Theatre and the Hollywood Sign. You can also explore the vibrant nightlife on the Sunset Strip.
- Santa Monica: Head to the beach and enjoy the scenic Santa Monica Pier. Take a walk along the Third Street Promenade known for its shops restaurants and street performers.
- Beverly Hills: Take a drive through the luxurious neighborhoods of Beverly Hills and see the iconic Rodeo Drive known for its high-end shopping.
- Griffith Observatory: Visit the Griffith Observatory for stunning panoramic views of Los