You have a couple of options when applying for a Visa for Vietnam but be aware the regulations change all the time, this is how I did it in September 2016. This is for a British Citizen:
- You can enter Visa free if you are visiting for under 15 days.
- You can apply at the embassy at home if you know when you are going to arrive.
- You can apply in a Vietnamese embassy abroad but the prices often change. I’ve heard stories of some people paying $30, some paying $60 and some paying over $100 for a 1 month visa.
- You can apply online as I did, it was very simple and I’ve explained it all below. The website is http://www.vietnamvisa.govt.vn
First of all decide how long you wish to enter Vietnam and if you want a single or multiple entry visa. The price is in USD but I’ve converted it into GBP. You have to pay a fee when applying online and then a stamp fee when arriving in Vietnam, the prices are as follows.
- 1 month single entry visa: £13 online + £18 stamp fee = £31
- 3 month single entry visa: £18 online + £18 stamp fee = £36
- 1 month multiple entry visa: £15 online + £38 stamp fee = £53
- 3 month multiple entry visa: £49 online + £38 stamp fee = £87
One you’ve selected your option it will ask you which processing time you wish to use. The above prices are for Normal (2 working days). For Urgent (1 working day) the online fee is £10 more and for Super Urgent (4 working hours) the online fee is £20 more than stated above.
After that fill in all your details including your passport number, port of arrival (only Hanoi, Danang and Hi Chi Minh) and date of arrival and you will be sent a confirmation e-mail. Then 2 days later you will be sent a 2 page form to print and fill out and take with you and a 4 page letter to print out and take with you. When arriving at the airport to check-in they may ask you for an itinerary and an exit point. If you don’t have one, which you probably won’t if your travelling and going with the flow, then just show them the 4 page letter and that’s all the information they need.
When arriving in Vietnam, we landed in Ho Chi Minh, go up to the visa desk and hand in your forms. This can be really busy so try not to be the last person off the plane. Hand over 2 passport photos along with the forms and they will ask you to take a seat. If you haven’t got passport size photos there is someone there to take your photo, but I didn’t find out how much this was. After a short wait, or a long one depending how busy it is, you will get called over to the cashier desk via ran not to collect your passport and visa. (Listen carefully as their English isn’t great.) It’s here you pay the stamp fee in USD. $25 for either single entry visa and $50 for either multiple entry visa. Double check your visa is correct then head over to immigration to get your passport stamped. Our visas took a while so by the time we got through passport control to collect our bags they had been taken off the conveyor belt and left on the floor.
This is a very simple, hassle free option to obtaining a Vietnam visa and is perfect if you are travelling and haven’t got a specific itinerary. This way when you decide you are going to Vietnam you don’t have to hunt around for a Vietnamese Embassy, you can apply online a few days before you fly out and enjoy the beauties of Vietnam, hassle free!