How To Apply For a Visa To Vietnam?

Vietnam is a scenic and spectacular travel paradise. It is one of the underrated Asian destinations with an unexplored album of mountains, deep valleys, sparkling sand beaches, and much more. Provided that your plans for an absolute Vietnamese getaway are on, make sure to read answers to all your questions for the visa procedure.

The application procedure for a Vietnamese visa has three basic options and you can choose from. An E-Visa, a Consular or Embassy Visa, or a Visa on Arrival having sets of separate regulatory guidelines.

ProcedureValidityApplication Fees*
E-Visa30 DaysUSD25
Consular or Embassy VisaUp to 12 Months***Varies**
Visa on ArrivalUp to 90 Days***USD25

*The mentioned fees are standard fees excluding the processing and stamping fees. 
** The fee is set according to embassy guidelines of your nation or according to the third party agent, as is your choice. 
*** It may vary according to your country of residence. Provided here is a standard duration. 

Nonetheless, the procedure doesn’t end there. It is likely that you might run into some undecipherable terms during the application procedure, which shall be highly confusing. Read on to sort out the questions you might encounter during and after the application duration.

An Insight into Each Procedure

Here’s the description of all details related to fees and required documents for each procedure of the application.

E-Visa

Launched in 2017, the E-Visa program has streamlined the visa acquiring process. According to the Vietnam Immigration Department, a total of 80 different countries can have access to the e-visa, which allows entry at the three international airports (Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City-South, Hanoi-North, and Da Nang-Middle) and 33 ports. The e-visa is allowed on a single entry basis.

Make sure not to fall prey to third party websites assuring e-visa.

How much do I pay?

The e-visa fees amount to USD25 payable during the application. This is the actual valid visa that doesn’t require an additional payment for stamping upon arrival.

What are the requirements?

For applying online through the e-visa website, there is a need for a scanned copy or a digital photo of your passport. You also have to upload your recent digital photo over a neutral background. Thoroughly fill in your details in the form since a single mistake can summon re-application.

What is the processing time?

It takes three business days for your visa to be attached and sent with a mail. A print out of this attached visa gives you an entry permit to Vietnam.

Consular Visa

This is the visa issued by the nearest Vietnamese Consulate or Embassy in your country. You have three options for filling the form, which includes online, by mail, or in person. However, it should be clear that this online procedure is not the same as e-visa. This option is mostly sought in case of longer stays. Nonetheless, the involvement of an embassy prevents you from scams.

What do I pay?

Each embassy or consulate has a set of updated price range depending upon your reason of stay and duration of stay. The payment is accepted in cash (when applying in person), money order (for mail applications), and credit card (for online applications).

Documents required?

For submission to your consulate or embassy, you would require original and photocopy of passport and photo of yourself over a neutral background (~2inchX2inch) along with the filled-in offline application form. Avoid errors or striking down on the form.

How long for processing?

The standard time period for processing is a minimum of three working days and can vary depending on your country. The visa comes affixed with the submitted passport, as a mail attachment for online application.

Visa on Arrival

This visa is available after arrival in Vietnam and can be availed only with a Letter of Approval from the Immigration Department. Travels consult, or visa agency can help you with your application for a Letter of Approval through the agency website. It is available only at the three international airports.

How much does it cost?

The standard fee is USD25, but in this case, you might encounter an additional stamping fee (in cash, upon reaching) that depends upon the rates set by your agency. The application rates may also vary from the standard rates depending upon your agency rates.

Documents to carry

For obtaining a visa on arrival, you will have to produce a pre-obtained Letter of Approval, four passport-sized photos of yourself over a neutral background, and the entry-exit form which will be provided to you during boarding, to the Immigration Officer at the Vietnam Airport.

Single-Entry vs Multiple-Entry Visa

While filling up the application form, you might encounter these two terms. 

  • Single-Entry Visa- Valid for 1-3 months
  • Multiple-Entry Visa- Valid for 1, 3, or months and can extend up to even one year.

The choice of entry and validity depends on your travel itinerary. If your plan is a single short visit, then single-entry would do. But, if your plan demands returning back after the first journey, then it is better to opt for multiple-entry, which allows you to return within the validity.

What Type of Visa to Choose?

During the application procedure, you might be asked to choose the type of visa. That depends on your purpose, and here’s a list of the various types.

TypePurpose
Tourist-VisaFor foreigners as tourists
Business-VisaFor foreign businessmen attending business meeting and conferences
Diplomatic-VisaFor government officials and diplomats
Transit-VisaFor foreigners who have a layover in the International Airport.
Investor-VisaFor foreign business investors in the Vietnamese business
Work-Visa*For foreigners seeking a job under a Vietnamese Firm
Student/  Internship-Visa*For foreign students seeking educational or internship purposes.

*Availed under special circumstances

What are the Chances of my Visa Selection?

How do you know whether your visa application is selected or rejected? Apart from avoiding making mistakes in filling the application form, you need to fit into the visa criteria. You are must be one of the foreign nationals who are not from nations exempted from visa-policy! Your passport should be valid without any discrepancies. You also must not fall under the case of suspension from entry according to Article 21 of Law on foreigners’ entry into, exit from, transit through, residence in Vietnam.

Can I Overstay or Extend my Visa?

Overstaying is highly discouraged. Cross-check your visa details to know the limit of your stay. It is not easy to sneak out unnoticed from the country with overstay. The consequences could range from high-end fines to punishments, including detainment or deportation (even permanent).

If you are planning to stay longer, it is advisable to extend your visa. For extension, you will require the help of a Vietnam Immigration Officer from Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, or Da Nang. Your request for extension is subject to validation of the reason for the stay. The list of documents and processing fees required to extend your visa depends upon the Officer who is willing to help you. 

Visa-Free Vietnamese Destinations: Did You Know?

If you want to visit any place in Vietnam without having to worry about your visas, then there’s this one single place. Popularly termed as the Phu Quoc Island, is a “Special Economic Zone,” off the coast of Cambodia, where travelers are eligible for a 30-day visa-free travel, irrespective of nationalities. Your passport must be 6-months valid, and you should possess a round-trip air ticket to the island.