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Visas and border crossings

Visas and border crossings forum

Prek Chak/Xa Xia border (Kep Ha Tien)

Posted by oasisbarhatien on 4/12/2011 at 00:23

Some recent developments at this crossing.1)The Cambodian entry/exit post has now been moved,so if you wish to visit the Ha Tien Vegas casino,(which is technically in Cambodia,and if you are already in Cambodia),you do not now have to show your passport,but can go directly to the casino,without leaving Cambodia or having your passport stamped.2)The age old scam of Cambodian touts hanging around the border and telling people you cannot take a motor vehicle into Vietnam is still alive and well.You CAN take a vehicle in to Vietnam, sometimes a small payment is required,the guys lying to you are hoping to get some business, by you using their car or moto.3)DO NOT change money from VND to Riel when leaving Vietnam-especially if the friendly moto driver tells you his friend will give you a special rate. He certainly will give you a special rate,which results in you losing a significant amount. Change money in Ha Tien before leaving.4)Some people like to travel to the border by moto or tuk tuk-up- to the individual,but, be warned -the last few km of the road to the border on the Cambodian side is unsealed,and currently extremely dusty.It's really not much more expensive to take a minibus,and much more comfortable.5) Recently I know of 3 people who have turned up at the border,wishing to enter Vietnam with a pre-approved visa.This is NOT acceptable at a Vietnam land border,it's ONLY for arrival by air at Hanoi,Da Nang and Saigon airports.After some discussion,the people were allowed to enter Vietnam, because Ha Tien is the only place in Vietnam where you can enter without a visa.But the visa is only for 15 days and only valid for the Ha Tien "SEZ" or special economic zone.These people were told that if they went to Saigon,they could regularise the situation there with Immigration,and get a visa before leaving the country.I have never heard of this being possible before,but the border officials told them this.Best way is to get the visa before in Sihanoukville,it only takes a few minutes.

#1 oasisbarhatien has been a member since 12/8/2010. Posts: 113

Posted by oasisbarhatien on 2/3/2012 at 19:16

A couple of updates on this border crossing.
1)Recently when I have been crossing here on two separate occasions there have been people turn up at the Vietnamese border without visas for Vietnam.On one occasion they had a "Pre-approved visa" which is not valid for land borders-only arrival in Vietnam at an International airport.This is quite widely publicised on the internet,so I don't know why they didn't know.On the second occasion the people concerned simply didn't have a visa.Now, normally,at most Cambodian/Vietnamese borders,I would think that the Cambodian border guards wouldn't let people exit Cambodia if they didn't have a valid Vietnamese visa-BUT-at this crossing you don't need one,if you are only going to the Ha Tien SEZ.On both occasions the people were refused entry to Vietnam,and had to return to Cambodia,where they firstly had problems because there was no entry/exit stamp for Vietnam,secondly,after some discussion,had to purchase a new visa for Cambodia,as the old one was used.and had to go to the Vietnamese consulate in Sihanoukville to get a proper visa.So-remember-except for a very few nationalities-there is NO VISA ON ARRIVAL for Vietnam.
2)Recently there have been a few cases of unscrupulous travel agents or hotels/guesthouses in Kampot selling tickets to travelers which appear to be valid from Kampot to Phu Quoc or Saigon .Once they have left Cambodia and got to Ha Tien,they find out that the ticket is only in fact to here,and then they must buy another ticket for their destination.Obviously the seller knows full well the traveler is not going to return to Cambodia to sort it out,so they get away with it.I am not going to name names on this occasion,as I have only heard one side of the story,but I would encourage anyone who is directly affected by this deception to publicise it on the internet,and name the guilty parties.There have been a few similar reports in the past but I don't remember having seen one recently,I suppose the only way to avoid it,is to buy tickets directly from the bus operator,or from a reputable hotel/agent,and make sure,perhaps by checking with the bus operator directly that the ticket is valid for it's supposed journey

#2 oasisbarhatien has been a member since 12/8/2010. Posts: 113

Posted by Kfriis on 25/4/2015 at 10:28


We scanned the internet for information on crossing the border from Cambodia to Vietnam via Ha Tien land border in the south on visa free travel. Quite a lot of misunderstanding (at least for scandinavian citizens). So just a status - april 2015 - from the land border crossing from Cambodia to Vietnam around Ha Tien. As Danish citizen we are free to travel Vietnam visa free - read: no visa needed - for a maximum of 15 days. 17 Countries have this exception with Vietnam.

I checked this in advance with the Vietnamese Embassy in Phnom Penh. Countries like Denmark, Norway, Sweden and 14 other countries have this exceptions with Vietnam. That means you can travel without problems from Cambodia to Vietnam. We did it today and had no problems at the border at all, no questions asked. We have read that they sometimes will ask for departure documents stating that you are actually gonna leave the country within the visa free period. They didn't ask us for this. We travled via minibus from Kep (Anna Tours). The driver took us all the way through the borders and to either busstation or harbour for departures to the island of Phu Quoc. For traveling more than 15 days you have to obtain visa in advance from the embassy.

#3 Kfriis has been a member since 25/4/2015. Posts: 1

Posted by oasisbarhatien on 4/7/2015 at 23:23

As of 1st July 2015 passport holders from the UK,Germany,France,Spain and Italy have been added to the list of people who can use the 15 day visa exemption.You can arrive at the border with no visa,and are permitted to enter Vietnam for 15 days.A friend of mine (UK passport)did this yesterday,there were no hassles,and no charge.

#4 oasisbarhatien has been a member since 12/8/2010. Posts: 113

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