Some up to date information on my recent experience ….....
Getting to the Embassy
The embassy is located about 7/8 kilometres from the centre (in the direction of the Friendship Bridge). If you take a tuk tuk, make sure the driver knows where he's going! A tuk tuk will charge up to 80,000 kip for a round trip and with hard bargaining 50,000 kip. Remember you'll need to do that twice – once to drop off and once to collect. Alternatively you can rent a bike for 10,000 kip and cycle there easily (20 minutes) – head along the main road and when you reach the Indian Embassy on the left hand side turn left (if you get as far as the Singapore Embassy you've gone too far) and the Myanmar Embassy is just a bit furtherup. Another option would be a bus – get off at the Indian Embassy and walk from there. Money saving tip: if there are 2 of you, you both need to go to submit the application but only 1 needs to go and collect it; meaning if you cycle total transport cost will be 30,000kip.
20 US dollars – only US$ acceptable, not kip.
4 working days ie apply on a Monday morning, collect on Thursday afternoon. Express service is not available (officially).
Hours are 9am to noon and 1pm to 4pm (I think). Definitely 9am open but don't quote me on the 4pm close. As usual check for public holidays.
In addition to the fee you will need to complete a fairly short form, twice over. Three identical passport photo's are required although they will return one when you pick up your visa. IMPORTANT – they are really strict on the background colour of the photos and they MUST be white. I had 2 different sets of options and both were rejected even though one had only a slightly off white background and the other a very pale grey one. If yours are rejected you'll have to go to the photoshop just across the street and pay 30,000 kip for 6 photos (although I did manage to bargain this down to 25,000). You don't get a receipt slip which is slightly disconcerting but I assume they don't get a sufficient number of applications to consider this necessary!
Our visas are valid for entry within 3 months of the issue date for the normal 28 day stay.
Overall Vientiane was a straight forward place to obtain visas; it took a bit of time but I think that was probably because the guy processing our application didn't have much to do – he sat with us on the sofa whilst we filled in the form, took it away, brought it back for us to stick on our photos, took it away again and came back to collect the money and we had a little chat too. In the time we were there we were the only ones submitting an application and one other couple turned up to collect. This does beg the question why they need 4 working days but ….........
Thanks for this info!
#2 willclarke has been a member since 11/1/2012. Posts: 1