Visas and border crossings forum
Visa - Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Indonesia
12th October, 2010
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I am leaving for Thailand in January, then on to Laos, Vietnam and ending up in Indonesia for a total of 6 months (the return flight is booked but can changed if necessary).
Starting in Bangkok, down to Ko Samui etc., up to Chang Mai, across into Laos, Luang Probang etc, into Vietnam, Hanoi then all the way down with stop offs to Saigon, then on to Indonesia, bali, gillies, lombok etc.
Wanted a bit more info on Visa's for each place if possible.
As I understand it, we can apply for a 30 day Thailand visa here, but we have to be within 90 days of going, then we can apply for a 30 day extension once we are there. Does the first 30 days have to end before we can apply for a new one? Also is Bangkok the only place we can get them?
Same for the other countries really, will probably only need the 30 days in Laos, if that, but I could see us wanting to stay longer in Vietnam and Indonesia if we find a decent place to stay. Can we only renew out visa's in the capitals? Don't really want to get to the other side of Indonesia and find out we have to go back to Jakarta to renew it.
Where / when should we get our Visa's for Laos, Vietnam and Indonesia?
Any help would be much appreciated.
#1 Posted: 12/10/2010 - 19:23
16th October, 2010
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This site has all the info you need for Thailand and Vietnam, for the others you might have to search somewhere else (if no one else answers).
This site suggests getting all visas for SE asia IN SE asian, one of the best places is Bangkok.
There you can apply for visas for what country you want to go next.
There is usually a 3-5 day waiting period.
You can enter SE asian countries with no visa and get one at the airport. EXCEPT Vietnam, they will turn you around and send you back without a second thought - and you must arrive the exact day as resisted on your visa.
#2 Posted: 16/10/2010 - 18:59
Lots of info scattered around this site, however in short:
- you will get free 30 days on arrival if you arrive by air
- you will get free 15 days on arrival if you arrive overland
- you can also apply for a free 60day visa via the Thai embassies
- you can apply online for a pre-approval letter that you show at the airport to get a 30-day visa ( costs $20USD or so, and then it's another $25 for stamp fee on arrival). Letter takes 2 days or so to be processed. I organised my through this site: http://www.myvietnamvisa.com/
- the pre-approval letter is NOT valid for arriving overland
- You can also apply for a visa at a Vietnam embassy
- I'm pretty sure you can apply for extended visa at embassy but do not know detail. Alternatively, I presume you can do a visa run across the border.
- You can get 30 days on arrival for USD$25 (according to my notes for 1 year ago - check on the Indo embassy website)
- You can also apply for 60-day visa ahead of time via Indo embassy. I paid NZD $70 which is approx USD$53.
- If you get the extended visa in Indonesia ahead of time, and you arriving in Bali (and probaly elsewhere), make sure you go to the Returning Residents and Extended Visa holder's line - it's MUCH shorter than the Visa on Arrival line!
If you are getting visa on arrival in Vietnam, it's best to have USD to pay. You don't mention Cambodia, but this is especially true for Cambodia. If you try to pay in baht, for example, they will give you some exhorbitant rate. Also, Cambodian customs guys will try to charge you more, even at the airport. Politely stick to your guns, and just hand the US$25 over, no more. Don't show them your wads of money; have it ready to go in your passport.
The above costs are what I paid this time last year, and as far as I know they still apply. Best thing is to google the embassy in your own country for each of the countries you plan to visit to ensure you are getting the latest info that applies to your country. Requirements can differ based on your nationality - but generally UK, US, Aust, Canada, NZ and Europeans nationals are treated the same; Asian travellers have slightly different requirements.
Search other posts on this visa forum - there is a wealth of info that will address your queries, esp about border crossings.
#3 Posted: 17/10/2010 - 13:38
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