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Vietnam Visa: Key Information to Know

Applying for a Vietnam visa won't be a stressful process if you have a basic understanding of the many different application procedures and methods. Here is a brief visa guide to Vietnam of the key information to apply for an entry visa:

Do I need a visa?
The majority of travellers to Vietnam will need to organize a visa if planning a holiday or business activity in the country. However, there are a few countries that have a special agreement in place where it is possible to visit Vietnam without holding a visa.

These countries include:
•   Visa-free travel for up to 30 days for: Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Laos
•   Visa-free travel for up to 21 days for: Philippines
•   Visa-free travel for up to 15 days for: UK, Denmark, Sweden, France, Germany, Spain, Norway, Italy, Finland, Russia, South Korea and Japan
•   Visa-free travel for up to 14 days for: Myanmar and Brunei

Vietnam visa required
For any travellers not citizens of the listed countries that intend to visit Vietnam or plan to stay longer than the exemption period, they will need to apply for a full entry visa.

At the present time, there is the option to apply for a Cheap Vietnam visa using one of three different application methods, consisting of:

•   Applying via a local Vietnamese embassy or consulate
•   Applying for a Vietnam visa on arrival via a third-party travel agent or tour operator
•   Applying online for an e-visa

Any of the options will help to organize the official visa for travel to Vietnam, but the actual process that is used to make the application is quite different.

1) Vietnamese embassy or consulate
Travellers that intend to visit a Vietnamese embassy get to benefit from a full visa in advance before departing for Vietnam. The actual process to apply for the visa via an embassy or consulate can vary but it will typically involve:

1 – Submit the application documents
The first step of applying via an embassy is to submit the relevant application form and supporting documentation, such as a hard-copy of the application form, passport size photographs, and original passport. 

2 – Get the documents reviewed
Get the application form and supporting documentation reviewed and if accepted pay the relevant service fee. The fee due will vary from embassy to embassy.

3 – Wait for visa processing
Wait for the Vietnamese embassy to organize the visa and return to pick up your official visa to Vietnam and original passport.

2) Visa on arrival
The Vietnam visa on arrival is one of the fastest and easiest options to apply for the Vietnam visa. The Vietnam visa is organized online which eliminates the need to travel to a local embassy or send original documents like a passport through the post.

The process of applying for the visa on arrival is quite straightforward and simply involves completing an online application with all relevant information. This kind of visa is organised with the help of a locally based travel agent or tour operator. After completing the application form, a visa approval letter is received within a period of 2-3 days, which is enough to board a flight to Vietnam and the official stamp is received at the designated Vietnam airport.

The procedure to apply for the visa on arrival is as follows:

1 – Complete the application form
Use a trustworthy and reliable Vietnam based travel agent or tour operator such as VivuTravel to make the application. Complete the online application form with the correct information and make sure there are no mistakes.

2 – Pay the service fee
A small fee is charged by every travel agent to help organise the visa approval letter. The fee charged will vary with the different agents, but this is typically in the region of $8-$15.

3 – Wait for the visa approval letter
After completing the application form and paying the service fee, the actual visa approval letter should follow within a period of 2-3 days. This approval letter must be printed out and taken on the flight to Vietnam.

4 – Arrive at the Vietnam international airport
Once you arrive in Vietnam at one of the major international airports (Hanoi, Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, or Danang) you will visit the immigration or visa on arrival desk to organise the actual visa stamp. However, this is also subject to a fee (in addition to the service fee paid to the agent) which is $25 for a single-entry visa or $50 for a multi-entry visa.

The Vietnam visa on arrival is seen as a very convenient option to apply for a visa, especially for travellers that do not have easy access to a local embassy. However, this is one particular rule that needs to be remembered and that is it is only relevant for travellers that plan to enter Vietnam by air.

3) E-visa
The e-visa is the latest visa option to be introduced for travellers to Vietnam. It first arrived in early 2017 and makes it possible to apply for a visa via the Vietnam Immigration Department. The application process takes place online to make it a relatively simple and straightforward process.

It is available to citizens from 40 countries around the world, including: 

Azerbaijan, Japan, Kazakhstan, Brunei, Sweden, Myanmar, Chile, Czech Republic, Philippines, Russia, Denmark, France, Romania, Bulgaria, Norway, Peru, Cuba, Colombia, Timor Leste, Venezuela, Uruguay, Hungary, Luxembourg, Poland, Slovakia, Finland, Belarus,  Armenia, Spain, Ireland, Mongolia, South Korea, Panama, Italy, Greece, Germany, Argentina,  China, United Kingdom, and United States of America.

It does exclude citizens from countries like New Zealand, Canada and Australia who will need to organise a visa using the traditional method of visiting a local embassy or applying online for a visa on arrival.

The Vietnam e-visa is valid for a period of 30 days which is non-extendable and a single-entry type of visa. The cost to apply for this visa is $25 and the processing time is in the region of 3-5 days.

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