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Vietnam Visa Guide 2020 - 7 important steps when applying for Vietnam Visa

Vietnam Visa Guide 2020 - 7 important steps when applying for Vietnam Visa

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    I. Which nationalities are required to apply for the Visa to Vietnam

    1. Do you need a Visa for Vietnam?

    Before traveling to Vietnam you should know that is your nationality required to apply visa to Vietnam? This is the first important step in the progress of preparing your Vietnam travel. Just imagine that you are a traveler who comes from the Vietnam Visa Exemption country and has a short time journey to Vietnam,  you only finish reading the below table from Vietnam Visa guide article. That is enough!

    Vietnam Visa Exemption
    (Holders of ordinary  passports issued by 24 countries do not require visas for Vietnam)
    Within 90 days Chile 90 days (Starting from 11 August 2017)
    Within 30 days ASEAN Country: Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Laos, Thailand,
    Kyrgyzstan
    Within 21 days Philippines
    Within 15 days 4 Western European countries as France, Germany, Spain, and Italy with the validation to 13th June 2021
    The United Kingdom for British citizens only with the validation to 13th June, 2021
    The Scandinavian nations (as Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland)
    Japan, South Korea, Russia, Belarus
    Within 14 days ASEAN country: Brunei, Myanmar
    Vietnam Visa Exemption
    (Holders of valid diplomatic/official service/special passports issued by 87 countries do not require visas for Vietnam)
    Within 90 days ASEAN country: Singapore
    Other Asia Countries: UAE, Sri Lanka, Mongolia, Moldova, South Korea, India, Bangladesh, Armenia, Pakistan,
    America Countries: Venezuela, Uruguay, Peru, Paraguay, Panama, Mexico, Chile El Salvador, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Colombia, Côte D'Ivoire, Brazil, Argentina
    Africa Countries: Mozambique, Morocco, Montenegro, Malta, Liberia, Egypt, Dominican, Algeria, Tunisia, Tanzania, South Africa, Seychelles 
    Europe Countries: Hungary, Czech, Cyprus, Switzerland, Ukraine, Turkey, Serbia, Russia,
    90 days within 180 days period from the date of entry Africa: Sudan 
    European Countries: Spain, Slovenia, Poland, Italy, France, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Estonia
    Asia Countries: Kuwait, Japan, Israel, Iraq, Iran
    Within 60 days Asia Country: Uzbekistan
    Within 30 days 6 ASEAN country: Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Myanmar, Philippines, Laos, Cambodia,
    Other Asia Countries: Kyrgyzstan, North Korea, Kazakhstan, China, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan
    Europe Countries: Romania, Croatia, Belarus, 
    Africa Countries: Angola, Albania
    America Countries:  Nicaragua, Cuba
    Within 15 days Europe Countries: UK, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Finland, Denmark
    Within 14 days ASEAN country: Brunei, Indonesia
    Vietnam E Visa
    (Vietnam is currently applying a pilot e-Visa system for citizens from 46 countries)
    ASEAN Countries: Timor Leste, Brunei, Myanmar, Philippines.
    Asia Countries: Australia, New Zealand, India, United Arab Emirates, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Japan, China( except U Shaped line passport), South Korea.
    Europe Countries: Armenia, Iceland, Poland, Belarus, Bulgaria, Germany, Czech, Denmark, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Russia, England,  Luxembourg, Finland, France, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Norway, Slovakia, Netherland.
    America Countries: United States, Canada, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Uruguay, Venezuela, Panamá, Peru.
    Vietnam Visa required in advance/ Vietnam Embassy Visa/Vietnam visa on arrival
    All other citizens are required to get a Vietnam visa (issued prior to entry by local Consulates or Embassies) or an approval letter for picking up a Visa to Vietnam (issued on arrival at Vietnam International Airports). Both are supplied before arrival in the country.
    (Being regulated by the Law of Vietnam Government)

    Whether you are traveling to Vietnam for business or pleasure, you should also be aware of the above Vietnam Visa requirements for foreigners. It will help to save your time preparing a plan to Vietnam. 

    2. Some exceptions of Vietnam Visa

    The tourists or the businessmen who hold British National Overseas passports are not exempted from visa to Vietnam requirement, included Vietnam Visa on arrival. They must have approval visas to enter Vietnam.

    The tourists or the businessmen who enter Vietnam to register visa exemption, the entry date must be at least 30 days from the previous exit as the unilateral visa-exempted person. Otherwise, they must have an approval visa to enter Vietnam.

    No Vietnam Visa is issued for 60 days per time with APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) 

    Phu Quoc Island is the only destination that has the Vietnam visa exemption requirement if the foreign tourists who entry into Vietnam through an international border gate and stay at the island no longer than 30 days. In case if the foreigners had gone through one of the international border gates of Vietnam before traveling Phu Quoc Island, they also use such exemption. If the holder of foreign passport want to travel to another province of Vietnam, The local immigration department has responsibility for issuing the Vietnam Visa on the spot

    3. The difference between Tourist Visa and Business Visa

    How are Vietnamtouristm visa and Vietnam business Visa categorized?

    The number of foreigners entering Vietnam is increasing. This sets new requirements in the policy of Visa to Vietnam which are in keeping with the integration process.

    Nowadays, foreigners entering Vietnam for various reasons, with each entry purpose having a corresponding visa. Before 2015, Vietnam visas for foreign citizens had been symbolized as A, B, C, D with number 1,2,3,4 behind. for different purposes of their visit. All old signs of Vietnam visa categories were replaced by the others which are more simple and clear. The all-new signs are based on the New Immigration Law issued on June 16th, 2014 and applied on January 1st, 2015 on entry, exit and immigration for foreign visitors in Vietnam.

    The number of visas as the newest regulation is up to 20 signs and the more important thing about the Vietnam visa is that the visa or the purpose of the visa is NOT converted. According to current regulations, the location of the visa sign is at the top right of the Vietnam visa.

    Whether you are planning to Vietnam for business or pleasure, you need to learn about the category Vietnam visa. This will help to have careful preparation before you apply for Vietnam Visa. Within this article, we will show clearly the classification of the Vietnam Tourism Visa and the Vietnam Business Visa

    The Vietnam Tourism Visa
    Sign Purpose description Staying Duration
    DL This visa type is granted to individuals who are visiting Vietnam for Within 3 months
    the purposes of non-business related tourism
    VR This Vietnam visa type is granted to individuals who are entering the Within 6 months
    country in order to visit with relatives residing there
    The Vietnam Business Visa
    LV1 This Vietnam visa type is issued to individuals who are working for the Government, National Assembly, the President, Party Central Committee, and guests of similar ranks of the presidents, the ministers or the vice of them, the leaders of committees provinces and cities directly under the Central Government Within 12 months
    LV2 This Vietnam visa type is issued to individuals who are working for social organizations, Vietnam Within 12 months
    Chamber of Commerce and Industry 
    DT This Vietnam visa is issued to individuals who are entering Vietnam in order to either invest in Vietnamese business or to Lawyers who are visiting the country to practice their profession Within 60 months
    DN This Vietnam visa type is required to individuals who are going into the country to do trade with Vietnamese companies in a short time Within 12 months
    LD This Vietnam visa type is issued to individuals who are entering Vietnam in order to work Within 24 months

    Besides, there are 13 remaining Vietnam visas for other purposes included: SQ, TT, PV1, PV2, HN, DH, NN1, NN1, NN2, NN3, NG1, NG2, NG3, NG4. With traveling and working purposes, you should remember all signs on the above table. Actually, Sign “VR” is not included on the Vietnam Tourism Visa but you can both travel Vietnam and visit with relatives residing there

    II. Your travel itinerary will decide the kind of entry visa to Vietnam

    A foreigner is permitted to enter Vietnam for tourism or business up to 90 days from the date of the first entry. The staying duration may be continuous or several times of visits depending upon whether your Vietnam visa is the single or multiple entries. Actually,  your choice of single or multiple entry Vietnam visa depends on your travel itinerary. 

    1. Single Entry visa to Vietnam - For an uninterrupted stay

    Once you leave Vietnam, you can not enter Vietnam again without getting the new Vietnam Visa. This has occurred when you had applied the single entry visa to Vietnam before. For example, if you apply for the 3 months single entry visa, you are allowed to enter and exit Vietnam once only within 90 days since your pre-registered arrival date.

    Vietnam single entry visa fee

    Vietnam Tourism Visa
    The staying duration Service fee Stamp fee The processing time
    Within 1 month USD 8 USD 25 1 - 3 working days (Not include Saturday, Sunday and Vietnamese holidays)
    Within 3 months USD 15 USD 25
    Vietnam Business Visa
    Within 1 month USD 55 USD 25 2 - 7 working days (Not include Saturday, Sunday and Vietnamese holidays)
    Within 3 months USD 80 USD 25

    2. Multiple Entry Visa to Vietnam - For the many stays in one or more countries

    As long as the total length of the staying time does not exceed the validity period of the visa which is applied from the date of first entry. If you have applied the Vietnam multiple entry visa before, you are allowed to enter and exit Vietnam multiple times within the staying duration since your registered arrival date.

    Vietnam multiple entry visa fee

    The Vietnam Tourism Visa
    The staying duration Service fee Stamp fee The processing time
    Within 1 month USD 10 USD 50 1 - 3 working days (Not include Saturday, Sunday and Vietnamese holidays)
    Within 3 months USD 25 USD 50
    The Vietnam Business Visa
    Within 1 month USD 60 USD 50 2 - 7 working days (Not include Saturday, Sunday and Vietnamese holidays)
    Within 3 months USD 85 USD 50
    Within 6 months USD 250 USD 95
    Within 12 months USD 425 USD 135

    Vietnam tourist visa for US citizens
    - 6 months and 12 months multiple entries tourist Visa are applied for US citizens only.
    - 3 months of staying are maximum for one entry. It means the US tourists will have to get a Vietnam visa run each 90 days with the Vietnam tourist visa.
    - For US citizens, who want to stay in Vietnam for 6 months or 12 months without wishing to exit or do a visa run is suggested applying for the Vietnam business visa.

    If you travel or work in Vietnam without going out of this country during your visa period, a single entry visa is an economical choice. But a multiple entry visa will be the most suitable choice for those who wish to enter in and out of Vietnam many times during their Vietnam visa period.

    III. Decide the best way to apply Vietnam visa

    The advantages and the disadvantages of ways to apply for Vietnam Visa

    Applying for a Vietnam visa is the first issue you should think before entering this S-shaped country. As citizens from most countries must register a visa to Vietnam in advance, figuring out how to get a visa for Vietnam is often a big deal in every visitor’s plans. Before entering any of Vietnam’s borders, choose one of the ways of getting a visa to Vietnam to fit your plans perfectly.

    You should know the advantages and disadvantages of every way to make your final decision. The below analysis will show you more information

    The way of getting Vietnam Visa Advantages Disadvantages
    Vietnam E-visa(Restricted) -Quick processing time: 3 working days to know your Vietnam visa application is approved or not. -Apply for the limited countries: Citizens of 46 countries in the above list.
    -It is legitimacy because it is guaranteed by Vietnam Immigration Department -Purpose of visit: vacation only or working while traveling
    -Easy apply for a visa from anywhere. -Being applied 1-month single entry.
    -Having super urgent service -Some airlines or even immigration staff at the airports may not have been aware of because the Vietnam E-visa is very new.
    -Being applied at more entry gate than Visa on arrival: 8 international airports, 13 international border gates, and 7 seaports across Vietnam. -Non-refundable visa fee in case your visa application is refused
    Vietnam visa on arrival -Just need to send copy passport away -Take so much time for waiting in the line at Immigration Counter at the Vietnam arrival airports to have a visa stamped
    -The simple and quick online procedure -Possibly having names of the guardian on approval letter
    -Exceptionally convenient for citizens who come from the countries have no Vietnam Embassy/Consulate -Foreign visitors can not apply for Vietnam visa on arrival themselves. The application must go through authorized organizations or travel agencies in Vietnam.
    -Receive dedicated support from staffs -Just be used at 5 (international airports in Vietnam, consisting of Noi Bai, Cat Bi, Da Nang, Tan Son Nhat and Cam Ranh)
    -Cheaper fee than getting a visa at Embassy.
    -163 countries are allowed to get Vietnam visa on arrival
    Vietnam visa at an Embassy or Consulate -Visa is already stamped onto original passport before entering Vietnam -Requiring original passport
    -Applicable to visitors to Vietnam by any means of transport and at any entry gates -Having to travel to the nearest embassy or send documents by post
    -All the cost is paid once at Embassy -Working directly with Vietnam embassies
    -The varied of visa fees and procedures are different at Vietnam embassies

    Name of Entry Gate which is good for Vietnam E-visa

    International airports (by airplane)
    1. Noi Bai international airport in Hanoi city, Vietnam
    2. Tan Son Nhat international airport in Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam
    3. Cam Ranh international airport in Nha Trang city, Khanh Hoa province, Vietnam
    4. Da Nang international airport in Da Nang city, Vietnam
    5. Cat Bi international airport in Hai Phong city, Vietnam
    6. Can Tho international airport in Can Tho city, Vietnam
    7. Phu Quoc international airport in Phu Quoc island, Kien Giang province, Vietnam
    8. Phu Bai international airport in Hue city, Thua Thien Hue province, Vietnam

    International land-crossing border
    1. Mong Cai border gate in Quang Ninh Province (border with China), Vietnam
    2. Friendship or Huu Nghi border gate in Lang Son province (border with China), Vietnam
    3. Lao Cai border gate in Lao Cai province (border with China), Vietnam
    4. Nam Can border gate in Nghe An province (border with Laos), Vietnam
    5. Cau Treo border gate in Ha Tinh province (border with Laos), Vietnam
    6. Cha Lo border gate in Quang Binh province (border with Laos), Vietnam.
    7. Lao Bao border gate in Quang Binh province (border with Laos), Vietnam.
    8. Bo Y border gate in Kon Tum province (border with Cambodia and Laos), Vietnam.
    9. Moc Bai border gate in Tay Ninh province (border with Cambodia), Vietnam.
    10. Xa Mat border gate in Tay Ninh province (border with Cambodia), Vietnam.
    11. Tinh Bien border gate in An Giang province (border with Cambodia), Vietnam.
    12. Song Tien border gate in Tien Giang province (border with Cambodia), Vietnam.
    13. Ha Tien border gate in Kien Giang province (border with Cambodia), Vietnam.
     

    International seaports (by ship)
    1. Hon Gai port in Quang Ninh province, Vietnam.
    2. Hai Phong port in Hai Phong province, Vietnam.
    3. Nha Trang port in Nha Trang city (Khanh Hoa province), Vietnam.
    4. Da Nang port in Da Nang city, Vietnam.
    5. Quy Nhon port in Quy Nhon city (Binh Dinh province), Vietnam.
    6. Vung Tau port in Vung Tau city (Ba Ria Vung Tau province), Vietnam.
    7. Saigon port in Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam.

    (Source from The Vietnam Immigration Department) 

    After reading carefully the pros and cons of three ways of applying for Vietnam Visa, have you chosen your best options? Please follow this article for the fifth step!

    IV. The required documents to prepare before applying visa to Vietnam

    If your nationality is not on the Vietnam visa exemption list, you need to prepare the sufficient documents before applying for Vietnam visa. Keeping the most necessary documents is an important step that helps you save the moving time and eliminate the inconvenient procedures when getting Vietnam Visa.

    1. The differences between the Vietnam tourist visa and the Vietnam business visa.

    The Vietnam tourism Visa or the Vietnam business Visa? Your visa is showing the reason you are entering Vietnam (in case you need a visa). You actually need the tourist visa in case you go into Vietnam for traveling but you also need a business invitation letter in case you are traveling Vietnam to set up some serious business issues.

    The Vietnam tourism Visa is approved when you wish to travel for leisure or visit family and friends. Also, you can travel on the tourist visa for attending recreational classes, for the music event or sports-related and even for medical treatments.

    The Vietnam Business Visa is approved when you can attend business or other business-related conventions, conferences, events. You can negotiate contracts and quotations, do trade, work for Vietnam company and carry out business purchases. You can even interview and hire staff during your staying duration with a business visa.

    2. The required Documents needed for Vietnam E Visa

    Vietnam E-visa means Vietnam Electronic visa (online visa) which you can do all the procedures online from submitting your application and the necessary documents until you get the E-visa for Vietnam. Planning for a Vietnam trip whatever your purpose is a business visa or tourist visa, the procedure will be the same but the required documents will change according to the purpose.

    Official Website for applying Vietnam E-Visa

    a. Who are qualified for Vietnam E-visa?

    Vietnam is currently issuing a pilot E-Visa system for citizens from 46 countries and nations. You can see the above list for qualifying your nationality.

    The legitimacy of Vietnam E-visa is 30 days

    The Vietnam E-visa is issued for a single entry visa and for both traveling and working purposes. 

    b. The required documents needed before applying Vietnam E-visa

    Purpose of Vietnam visa Required documents
    The Vietnam Tourism Visa Passport with an original and signed passport valid for 6 months beyond stay in Vietnam
    Vietnam visa application Form
    Color scan of the first-page passport with the full-page captured and clearly displayed information. 
    Passport photo with the white or off-white background, a neutral expression without smiling face, the opened and looking at the camera eyes without glasses, the foreheads and ears without covering by hats, scarf or anything except religious reasons, RGB color - no filter or black and white. The photo of Vietnam visa must be taken within 6 months of the application date
    The size of Vietnam visa photo must be 4x6cm.
    Credit card, Mastercard for paying the visa fee online
    The Vietnam Business Visa Passport with an original and signed passport valid for 6 months beyond stay in Vietnam
    Vietnam visa application Form
    Color scan of first- page passport with full-page captured and clearly displayed information. 
    Passport photo with the white or off-white background, a neutral expression without smiling face, the opened and looking at the camera eyes without glasses, the foreheads and ears without covering by hats, scarf or anything except religious reasons, RGB color - no filter or black and white. The photo of Vietnam visa must be taken within 6 months of the application date
    The size of Vietnam visa photo must be 4x6cm.
    Letter of invitation
    Business cover letter
    Proof of travel arrangement
    Residency status
    Special instructions
    Credit card, Mastercard for paying the visa fee online

    3. The required documents needed for getting a visa from a Vietnam Embassy or Consulate in your home country 

    a. Who should get Vietnam visa at Embassy or Consulate

    The citizens come from the countries which have a Vietnam Embassy or Consulate

    The visitors are still in their home country and have so much time before entering Vietnam

    The people who are ready to pay the higher Vietnam Visa Fee in order to keep the peace in mind of having a visa all set before coming to Vietnam.

    b.  The required documents needed for getting a visa from a Vietnam Embassy or Consulate

    Purpose of Vietnam Visa Required Documents
    The Vietnam Tourism Visa - A Vietnam visa application form( directly pickup at the Embassy or Consulate or download from the official website)
    - An original passport having the validity of 6 months from departure date to Vietnam and at least two(02) blank pages for getting a visa stamp
    - Two within 6 months passport photos with the size of 4x6cm
    - An envelope with the detail address for receiving a visa by post
    - Money for visa stamp fee and postal fee for receiving a visa by post
    The Vietnam Business Visa - A Vietnam visa application form( directly pickup at the Embassy or Consulate or download from the official website)
    - An original passport having the validity of 6 months from departure date to Vietnam and at least two(02) blank pages for getting a visa stamp
    - Letter of entry clearance: The hiring company, business partner will support you to get this letter
    - Two within 6 months passport photos with the size of 4x6cm
    - An envelope with the detail address for receiving a visa by post
    - Money for visa stamp fee and postal fee for receiving a visa by post

    4. The required documents needed for applying for a Vietnam visa on arrival

    a. Who should get the Vietnam visa on arrival

    The citizens who come from the country have no Vietnam Embassy or Consulate or live far from the Vietnam Embassy in the home country.

    The foreigners plan the Vietnam trip in the last minutes

    The people want to get a Vietnam visa as cheap as possible

    b. The required documents need for getting Vietnam visa on arrival

    Purpose of Vietnam Visa Required Documents
    The Vietnam Tourism Visa - A Vietnam visa application form( directly pickup at the Embassy or Consulate or download from the official website)
    - An original passport having the validity of 6 months from departure date to Vietnam and at least two(02) blank pages for getting a visa stamp
    - Two within 6 months passport photos with the size of 4x6cm
    - Cash only for visa stamp fee and postal fee for receiving a visa by post
    The Vietnam Business Visa - A Vietnam visa application form( directly pickup at the Embassy or Consulate or download from the official website)
    - An original passport having the validity of 6 months from departure date to Vietnam and at least two(02) blank pages for getting a visa stamp
    - Letter of entry clearance: The hiring company, business partner will support you to get this letter
    - Two within 6 months passport photos with the size of 4x6cm
    - Cash only for visa stamp fee and the additional fees for letter approval

    V. How to apply Visa to Vietnam

    As I mention above, whatever purposes you enter Vietnam, the getting visa process is the same for all visitors 

    1. Getting Vietnam E-visa process

    Vietnam government is now launching the official immigration website. You do not need to register through an agent website anymore, which will save you a few troubles.

    Step 1: Accessing the Vietnam E-visa website.

    Step 2: Fill out the online form fields, very self- explanatory.
                - Upload a passport-sized photo

    Upload your passport’s data page

    Fill out your personal information, travel dates, address, etc.

    Step 3: Verify the exact information

    Step 4: Go to payment link and settle

    Step 5: After 3 working days, check the status and make sure that it was already approved

    Step 6: Click the print visa button. You must bring the printed Vietnam visa with you when checking in the flight to Vietnam


    2. Getting Vietnam visa at embassy or Consulate process

    Step 1: Prepare the required documents

    Step 2: Access the Official Vietnam Embassy website to fill in electronically the Vietnam visa application form online, and print it out. You can print the blank PDF form via the website and write down by hand

    Step 3: You can apply in person at Vietnam Embassy or mailing your materials

    Step 4: 

    Register all required documents at the Visa counter, pay the visa fee and get a promissory note from the Embassy staff. The processing time from 2-7 working days depending on the kind of visa

    If you send your materials to the Embassy via mail, remember to add in a few days on either end to account for the time your application takes to get there and back

    Step 5: Get directly the visa at Embassy or pay more the postal fee attached envelope having the address for receiving the Vietnam visa by post

    3. Getting Vietnam visa on arrival process

    Step 1: Prepare all of your required documents

    Step 2: 

    For Travelers: Choose the reliable Vietnam Visa Agency, fill the application form, send the scan of required documents, pay the visa service fee. They will submit and do the remaining procedures for granting a letter of approval for a Vietnam visa on arrival.

    For Business: Send the required documents to the business partner for being supported to grant a letter of approval for a Vietnam visa on arrival.

    Step 3: Waiting two days and more for receiving the letter of approval via your registered email

    Step 4: Remember print the letter and pack it with required documents on your luggage

    Step 5: The only points for issuing Vietnam Visa on arrival are 5 international airports in Vietnam. So you have to take the flight to travel to Vietnam. After landing, You should come to the arrival counter, wait in line for the name called, show the original required documents and pay the visa stamp fee in cash only

    VI. Read some important tips when applying for Vietnam visa

    Keep in mind the 30 days starts from when your visa date is valid, NOT from when you enter the country.

    Top recommendation Agencies for a Visa on Arrival:

    Vietnamvisa-Easy

    Vietnam Visa Govt
    Vietnam E visa
    Vietnam Immigration and Visa Services
    3. The maximum of staying duration for Vietnam tourist visa on arrival is up to 3 months and for Business visa on arrival is up to 12 months

    4. Please note two main points when applying Vietnam visa for children:

    Children under one- year- old: not required photo

    Children under 14 years old: They may not fill another application form, they only need to apply their personal information (full name, date of birth, 2 passport 4x6cm photos) with their parent’s application.

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    22 Jan 2020
    How to get to Ca Mau, Vietnam About Sapa, Vietnam

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