The entry requirements into the Socialist Republic of Vietnam differ depending on your intended actions in Vietnam, your country of origin, and the length of your stay. We offer consultation services so that you may determine what documents you need to enter and/or remain in Vietnam for any given purpose or time.
For example, Vietnam does not require visas for citizens of most ASEAN countries, Scandinavian countries, and Russia as long as you travel for a limited time. United States citizens and residents, however, must possess a Vietnamese visa, a visa exemption document, or a written approval document for a visa on arrival. All visitors, from any country, must have a passport or a green card with at least six months of validity remaining.
The most efficient way to obtain a visa is to apply for a visa on arrival. Our service offers travelers this convenience. First, apply through our website. The government of Vietnam may request appropriate documentation from you in order to enter the country. This can include proof that you are able to support yourself while in Vietnam (lodging, food), proof that the person hosting you really exists and has sufficient room for hosting you, and/or proof that you have obtained health and evacuation insurance.
If you are granted permission to travel, you will receive your approval letter within days. The visa approval letter is issued by Vietnam's immigration department. Once you have the letter, you may pick up your visa on arrival in Vietnam at one of the three international airports (Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, and Da Nang). An immigration official will verify the details on your approval letter and passport before allowing you entry.
Vietnam is a developing and primarily agrarian country that is moving from a centrally-planned economy to a market economy. Political control currently rests with the Communist Party. Vietnam is strict and visa applications aid the host country in determining who is safe to enter its borders. The government can consider your financial situation, criminal record, previous visit history, and the reason for applying.
The Vietnamese government takes travel in and out of the country seriously. For this reason, it is extremely important for anyone proposing to travel to Vietnam to be sure they have the documents required. According to the U.S. State Department, the Government of Vietnam punishes severely those who attempt to travel with falsified documents. If one travels to Vietnam with an altered or otherwise fraudulent travel document, criminal prosecution and possible imprisonment are likely. Moreover, if you arrive without the proper paperwork, Vietnam will deny entry and you will be subject to immediate deportation.
A visa issued by Vietnam shows that the person to whom it is issued is authorized to enter or leave Vietnam during a specific time period. Visas are issued to cover one or more visits into the country during the time for which your visa is valid. Vietnamese visas are typically single-entry. To obtain a multiple-entry visit, you must specifically request that type and pay an additional fee. Please note that if you intend to travel to another country from Vietnam and return to Vietnam before coming home, you will need a multiple-entry visa or an additional single-entry visa.
To obtain a visa from Vietnam, you must cover two fees: 1) the visa fee and 2) the visa processing fee. The U.S. Embassy and Consulate officials have received reports of processing fees varying from one applicant to another and from one issuing entity to another.
There are two major types of visa, short-stay and long-stay. Short-stay visas include tourist visas, probably the most common type of visa because it covers trips to Vietnam for vacation or for business (not permanent work). Long-stay visas include student, journalist, marriage, and others. The Government of Vietnam is strict about what visitors may do when traveling under each visa. If you change the purpose of your visit, you must obtain permission from the government.
On the off chance that your documents are lost or stolen while in Vietnam, you must replace both the passport and the visa, so take great care with your travel documents. Your consulate or embassy in Vietnam can usually issue an emergency passport promptly but the Vietnamese government can take from three to five days to replace your visa.
The safe traveler should also be aware that the Vietnamese government may limit your in-country travel even with a visa. Certain areas of the country are "sensitive" and if you do go there, you may risk punishment by Vietnam. In addition, your country of nationality is less likely to be able to provide any aid to you in those areas. In the past, foreigners were detained after traveling to areas on the border with China, Cambodia, and Laos. Unsafe areas are not always marked and there are no specific warnings against travel. If you do intend to travel to a sensitive area, be sure to obtain permission from the Vietnamese government.
Get your visa safely and efficiently through a visa on arrival application, then practice safety and security with your travel documents before and during your stay in Vietnam.