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Vietnam Visa Online: What Travellers to Vietnam Need to Know

Applying for a visa is one of the more complicated and time-consuming aspects of getting ready for the Vietnam holiday. But, with the right application method, it is possible to shorten the time to obtain a Vietnam visa. Compared to the traditional method of applying for a visa via a local Vietnamese embassy, the option to apply for the visa on arrival over the internet is quick and easy, and is accepted by the Vietnamese Immigration Department just like any other Vietnam visa.

The Vietnam visa on arrival is certain to be the most appealing option for those travelling by air and intend to arrive at one of the major international airports (Hanoi, Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, or Danang). Also, the Vietnam e-visa is a further option to complete the visa application online.

Whether you are looking to organise the e-visa prior to arrival or pre-arrange the letter of approval for the visa on arrival, our Vietnam visa guide will help you understand the different options.

Vietnam Visa Online

Visa Exemptions
Firstly, it is worth checking to see if you are one of the few countries to benefit from a short-term visa exemption period. This makes it possible to visit Vietnam for a short stay in the country without needing to go through the process of applying for a visa. But, this visa exemption does have its limitations. If you plan a short stay of 1 or 2 weeks, this is certain to be a useful benefit.

Citizens from ASEAN countries typically get to enjoy a visa-free stay of up to 30 days, while travellers arriving from European countries like Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom get a visa exemption period of up to 15 days.

For travellers making use of the visa-free travel it is only necessary to book your flight to Vietnam and you are ready to go. However, it is also important to have the return flight booked because confirmation of this must be shown to immigration on arrival in Vietnam.

Vietnam visa online options

Here are the methods for organising a Vietnam visa online:

Visa on Arrival
The visa on arrival is seen as the fastest, cheapest and most efficient method to organise the Vietnam visa. It makes a simple and practical option for the travellers that are not on the visa exemption list, unable to apply for the e-visa, or planning to travel beyond the short stay of the visa-free period. Anyone looking to use the Vietnam visa on arrival must apply for a letter of approval before arriving in the country.

In order to obtain the approval letter it is necessary to get in touch with a third-party travel agent or tour operator based in Vietnam. The approval letters aren't issued directly by the Vietnamese Embassy.

This method does give the option to apply for the cheap Vietnam visa with the service fees starting at around $8-$15, which is a lot cheaper than using the traditional method of visiting a Vietnam embassy in person. Also, it is possible to apply with short notice and a fast-track application can be completed in the same day (subject to an extra fee).

Once you have sourced a trustworthy company to organise the visa on arrival, such as VivuTravel, the entire process to make the application is super easy. It is simply a process of completing an online application form with all relevant information, paying the service fee, and waiting the 2-3 days for the letter of approval.

The application form must be completed with 100% accuracy to avoid any delays or problems after arriving in the country.

After the Vietnam letter of approval is received you will need to print it out and take with you on your travels to Vietnam. This approval letter is enough to get into Vietnam and is accepted by airlines in place of the official visa paperwork.

At immigration, make your way to the landing/arrival visa office by following the clearly marked signs. When there, you simply show the relevant paperwork (application form, approval letter, 2 passport sized photos and original passport) and pay a further fee for the stamping process (this is in addition to the fee charged for organising the approval letter). The fee payable at the airport is $25 for the single-entry visa or $50 for the multi-entry visa – fees are payable in cash using VND or USD.

Even though it might seem that there are several steps involved in applying for the Vietnam visa on arrival, it is still a lot easier to organise compared to the traditional method of using a local embassy and considerably cheaper.

Important note: It is important to note that the Vietnam visa on arrival is only a practical option for travellers that plan to enter the country via air and land at one of the major international airports (Hanoi, Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, or Danang).

e-Visa for Vietnam
A further option to apply for the Vietnam visa online is the e-visa (electronically granted visas) which was introduced by the Vietnamese government in February 2017. This kind of visa lasts for a maximum of 30 days (non-extendable) and is intended for single-entry trips. Also, this visa lets the travel enter the country via one of 28 nominated entry gates (land-borders, seaports, and international airports)

The Vietnam e-visa is available to citizens of 40 countries, including:
Azerbaijan, Japan, Greece, Argentina, Bulgaria, China, Italy, Philippines, Russia, Cuba, United Kingdom, Luxembourg, France, Denmark, Colombia, United States of America, Uruguay, Hungary, Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Finland, Belarus, Sweden, Romania, Peru, Armenia, Chile, Norway, Spain, Ireland, Timor Leste, Mongolia, South Korea, Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Venezuela, Panama, Brunei.

The process is relatively straightforward for travellers who need to complete an online application form, attach a scanned copy of the passport, a passport photo, and submit the application along with the service fee due of $25. The time to process the application is in the region of 3-5 days and is sent via email which must be printed and brought to Vietnam when you travel.

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