Visas and border crossings forum

Quick advice needed: Visa on arrival, Laos to China

  • Lamar

    Joined Travelfish
    16th December, 2007
    Posts: 3

    Currently in Luang Namtha and looking to make a trip into China through the Boten border crossing. Does anyone know if this is possible without prior arrangement? In other words, will I be able to obtain a Chinese visa on arrival through Boten, Laos? Really appreciate the quick response, happy travels to all!

    #1 Posted: 5/3/2008 - 12:54

  • Advertisement

  • somtam2000

    admin
    Click here to learn more about somtam2000
    Joined Travelfish
    21st January, 2004
    Location Indonesia
    Posts: 7058
    Total reviews: 24
    Places visited:
    At least 113

    As far as I know, you need a visa in advance for that crossing -- would suggest asking around in Luang Nam tha for a definitive answer though.

    #2 Posted: 6/3/2008 - 10:14

  • natwest

    Joined Travelfish
    6th March, 2008
    Location China
    Posts: 24

    There is no such thing as Visa On Arrival for China. You must always arrange your visa before you arrived at the border. But the possibility of a one day border town pass is sometimes available (depends on location)

    As far as I am concerned, in the entire SEA region, there is only Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Burma that offered some sort of VOA.

    #3 Posted: 11/3/2008 - 18:04

  • Lamar

    Joined Travelfish
    16th December, 2007
    Posts: 3

    Thanks to you both! I've since sorted it out and, sure enough, China requires advance visa arrangements. Note to any future reader, if you're in Luang Namtha and looking to arrange a Chinese visa, Chiang Mai is an accessible option.

    Happy travels to all!

    #4 Posted: 13/3/2008 - 10:03

  • SBE

    Click here to learn more about SBE
    Joined Travelfish
    14th April, 2008
    Location Global Village
    Posts: 1951
    Total reviews: 5
    Places visited:
    At least 2

    Well a friend of mine (Canadian) did get a 2 week visa on arrival a few months before the Olympics.

    Does anyone have any recent info? Apparently travel agents in Luang Namtha told him it was possible and it worked! Just musing about my next trip which will probably involve N Laos and I haven't been to China yet....I wouldn't mind a quick look see if it's possible but haven't got time for a big trip as I want to go back to Burma too.

    #5 Posted: 1/8/2009 - 18:29

  • somsai

    Joined Travelfish
    1st March, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 564

    SBE you might want to check with your freind and see what the visa itself actually says. I suspect the travel agency got a visa (Vientiane or Chang Mai)and your freind was simply stamped in at the border. VOA to China would be kind of a big deal.

    LP Thorn Tree NE Asia used to have some expat contributers from Jihong, might be worth a post there.

    #6 Posted: 1/8/2009 - 21:52

  • SBE

    Click here to learn more about SBE
    Joined Travelfish
    14th April, 2008
    Location Global Village
    Posts: 1951
    Total reviews: 5
    Places visited:
    At least 2

    Thanks Somsai. When you said a VOA to China would be a big deal I rechecked what my friend actually said in his emails. I'm pretty sure he didn't have a Chinese visa beforehand. He hadn't even planned to go to Luang Nam Tha ... he only went there because he found LP to be a "tourist anthill"

    I got an email from him in April saying he was in Dali which surprised me somewhat, so I asked him how on earth he'd managed to get into China without a pre-arranged visa.

    He answered saying that two travel agents in Nam Tha told him that as a Canadian he could get a 30 day visa on arrival so he decided to try it. According to him the request did "catch the Chinese immigration people by surprise" and once the dust settled all he got was 2 weeks. He also mentions the stress of the bus driver trying to give him his fare back (6 times) and that the processing of his VOA held everyone up for an extra 15 minutes. It sounds like the bus driver didn't believe he'd get a VOA either!

    I did a bit more searching just now and found this:

    http://www.mekongtourism.org/site/resources/visa-info/china-visa-info/

    No Chinese VOA anywhere except ...Boten? But who knows how reliable that is and maybe it only applies to certain nationals (like Canadians)?

    Someone also said this on TT recently.

    "At some points of entry under some conditions China does issue visas on arrival.

    Last year, for example, Mohan issued 5155 visas to travellers from 24 countries, including 147 "L" visas, 36 "F" visas, 10 transit visas, and 396 group visas covering a total of 4962 travellers. And they've issued 2948 visas in the first half of 2009."

    http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/message.jspa?messageID=15924532

    #7 Posted: 2/8/2009 - 03:17

  • somsai

    Joined Travelfish
    1st March, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 564

    Extremely interesting.

    Sounds like VOA to me SBE. Maybe other nationals could just paste a maple leaf patch on the old backpack and wing it. Sometimes new visa rules take forever to filter down to general knowledge.

    I heard it first from you. ;-)

    #8 Posted: 2/8/2009 - 19:37

  • markbek

    Joined Travelfish
    7th January, 2010
    Posts: 5

    In Huay Xai there's a specialist travel agency for Xishuangbanna which claims that Boten is indeed a special case and that unlike anywhere else in China, one can get a visa on arrival there. Friends at Udomxai tourist department have since double checked with Chinese officials in Vientiane who suggest that it is 'better' to have a visa beforehand but that in principle it should be possible. Whether the Chinese border guards realise that they have this possibility is another question - sounds like the ideal time for someone to just go up and give it a go!
    Would love to hear any concrete examples of anyone who had made it or actually failed to...
    Cheers
    Markbek

    #9 Posted: 19/3/2010 - 12:25

  • somsai

    Joined Travelfish
    1st March, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 564

    A couple months ago I sent an email to SBE's second link at #7, it's some kind of official tourism site. I got a swift response to await another response after research, then after 3 weeks got a kind of uncommiting response saying maybe yes maybe no.

    #10 Posted: 19/3/2010 - 19:51

  • Advertisement

  • stickmansuc-
    ks

    Joined Travelfish
    10th June, 2011
    Posts: 14

    Hello,


    Has anybody traveled from Laos to China by land lately ?

    And is the border area near Laos but in China side nice or do you need to go to Kunming in Yunnan to find nice landscape ? (mountains, weed, etc..)


    Thanks.

    #11 Posted: 22/7/2012 - 15:18

  • LaraHelen

    Joined Travelfish
    13th July, 2012
    Posts: 35

    Posted from within Vietnam.

    In my opinion, you should contact with travel agencty to plan your trip for you. They can help you much

    #12 Posted: 23/7/2012 - 03:41

  • stickmansuc-
    ks

    Joined Travelfish
    10th June, 2011
    Posts: 14

    In my opinion nobody needs a travel agency especially since Internet exists..

    Should I select a group tour also ? :-)

    .Thanks anyway.

    #13 Posted: 23/7/2012 - 03:48

  • mariajames

    Joined Travelfish
    29th September, 2012
    Posts: 58

    You have to consistently align your acceptance adore you accustomed at the border. But the believability of a one day bound boondocks canyon is sometimes available

    #14 Posted: 18/10/2012 - 10:59

Have questions? Jump to our menu of forum quicklinks

Add your reply

Your reply

Check this box if you want to be notified of replies.

Please be familiar with our user guidelines before you post. Thanks!

Businesses planning on plugging their guesthouse / hotel / karaoke bar should read our "Addition guidelines" very carefully.

You need to be logged in to answer an existing post on the Travelfish forums. Please login via the prompts just above and refresh this screen -- before writing your post -- and you'll be in business.

Possibly related discussions Replies  Views  Latest reply
Visa on arrival 30 days to 60 day visa - ADVICE NEEDED. ... By lunar_angelic on 22 Apr 2013 3 1344 2 May 2013
Quick Question: Do you get a full page visa upon entering Vietnam (Visa on Arrival in AP) ... By Sethlake on 22 Dec 2010 3 3994 6 Jun 2011
Quick query regarding Malaysian visa on arrival... ... By luce_uk on 16 Jan 2010 1 3204 17 Jan 2010
Urgent advice plz. Visa on arrival at Tay Trang Viet/Laos border? ... By johnkitchener on 29 Nov 2010 4 2724 30 Nov 2010
Visa on arrival in Lao from China ... By biene on 2 Dec 2008 2 2690 6 Dec 2008
China visa on arrival ... By leopang on 16 Dec 2012 3 1898 4 Feb 2013
Thai Visa Advice Needed ... By alitrfc on 27 Dec 2008 4 2327 29 Dec 2008
Vietnam to Laos, Laos to Cambodia, Visa on arrival? ... By Gorgonzola on 19 Oct 2011 0 2284 19 Oct 2011
Laos visa on arrival update ... By eggewaertslamp on 30 May 2009 2 6426 2 Jun 2009
Cambodia to Laos visa on arrival?? ... By Clare1993 on 7 Jul 2012 3 3220 13 Jul 2012