If you are planning to go to Vietnam and are a citizen of a country where a Visa is required, or need one due to the length of your stay, you have better options now! Applying online is convenient, fast, and cheap.

There are two main types of online Vietnam visas: e-Visa and Visa On Arrival. For an e-Visa, you can apply through the Vietnam government’s National Web Portal, or through websites of some travel agencies. For a Visa-On-Arrival, you can apply through the websites of most travel agencies.

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What are the documents that you require?

The documents required differ for e-Visa and Visa On Arrival. Within Visa On Arrival, the documents required will again vary slightly based on the type of visa, such as tourist visa, business visa, etc.

You must have an internet connection on a device such as a tablet or PC and be able to scan and print documents in order to apply for a visa online.

e-Visa

e-Visas are single-entry visas that are valid for 30 days. This type of visa is best for tourists who do not plan to stay longer than a month. Those who want a transit visa in order to leave the airport while making a stop between flights in Vietnam can also apply for an e-Visa.

The entire visa application is processed within 3 working days after the submission of the application and payment of fees. There is no need to wait in line at the airport or pay any stamping fees, which makes it a cheaper and faster option than Visa On Arrival.

Currently, citizens of 80 countries can apply for a Vietnam e-Visa and can enter or exit through 33 designated international checkpoints. The list of both of the above is available on the National Web Portal on Immigration’s e-Visa page.

If you wish to stay longer than the 30-day limit on an e-Visa, a Vietnamese individual or organization will have to guarantee your stay and apply on your behalf for a new visa while you are still in Vietnam. A Vietnamese individual or organization cannot guarantee your stay or apply on your behalf for the e-Visa itself.

Documents required for e-Visa

When applying through the Vietnam government’s portal for e-Visas, the following documents must be scanned and uploaded:

  1. Your passport. The expiry date of the passport should occur at least 30 days after the expiry of the e-Visa.
  2. A photo of you in .jpg format. The photo should be passport-sized (portrait, 4×6 cm), with a white background. You should be looking straight ahead and not wearing any glasses.
  3. A photo of your full passport data page in .jpg format. Your photo, information, and ICAO lines should be visible.

Other information that you will need to know

  1. The temporary address in Vietnam. This is the accommodation you will be staying at immediately after entering Vietnam. You can enter the address of the place you will be staying overnight after landing.
  2. Entry and exit dates and checkpoints. The checkpoints must be one of the airports, ports, etc. designated as checkpoints for e-Visas. The entry and exit dates do not necessarily need to be the exact dates on which you plan to land or leave Vietnam. 

You can only enter one or after your stated entry date, and you can leave anytime on or before your stated exit date.

Additionally, you will need an international credit or debit card to make payments. Some sites might also ask for an email address.

Steps to obtain an e-Visa

Once you have all the required documents, you are ready to begin your application process on your chosen site. For the Vietnamese government’s e-Visa portal, you will go through the following steps:

  1. The application form will first require you to upload the .jpg images of your photo and passport data page.
  2. Next, you will manually fill out the information required from your passport data pages, such as your name and nationality.
  3. You will now be required to enter information regarding your trip, such as entry/exit dates.
  4. After this, you will enter the payment stage. The Vietnamese government portal offers four payment methods, including debit and credit cards.
  5. Once you have paid the fee, you will receive a registration number. Make sure to save this code as you will need it for the next step.
  6. After three working days, you can check the portal for your downloadable e-Visa. You will not be contacted about this; you will have to check it yourself. If your e-Visa hasn’t been processed after three working days, you can drop a support request to find out more information.
  7. Once you have downloaded your e-Visa, print it out. It is recommended to carry multiple physical copies of the e-Visa. 

When you arrive in Vietnam, you will be required to show your passport and e-Visa at the airport or port through which you enter.

Fees for an e-Visa

If you are applying through the site of the Vietnamese government’s e-Visa portal, then you will be required to pay 25 USD while applying for your e-Visa. This amount is non-refundable even if your e-Visa is rejected, or you end up not needing it. You will not be required to pay any other fees.

Comparing e-Visa and Visa-On-Arrival

Though most consider e-Visa a better online option than Visa On Arrival, which one is best for you depends on many elements such as length and purpose of your stay and mode of travel. It is best to compare the two to decide which is best for you.

Aspecte-VisaVisa On Arrival
CostUsually costs less due to no stamping fees.Due to varied travel agency costs and stamping fees, the cost is almost always more than e-Visa.
Processing TimeIt takes 3 working days to process—no waiting time upon arrival.It can take an average of 1 to 4 days to process. Waiting time at the airport can be highly varied.
ValiditySingle entry and 30 days validity. Single or multiple entries and has a flexible validity period.
EligibilityMust be a citizen of one of 80 eligible countries, and can pass through any one of 33 designated checkpoints.Citizens of any country traveling by air are eligible, but can only pass through one of the few international airports.
Area of ApplicabilityIt can be used while traveling by air, sea, or bus/border gates.Only applicable when traveling by air.

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Here’s everything you needed to know about applying for Vietnam Visa online. Look into all the details perfectly and decide which one suits you best.