Vietnam is a fascinating country in SE Asia that is appreciated for its fascinating culture, delicious food and beautiful countryside.
But before it is possible to start enjoying your stay in Vietnam it is necessary to take the appropriate steps to organise a Vietnam visa.
Who needs a Vietnam visa?
If you aren’t a citizen on the short list of countries that enjoy a short visa-free stay in Vietnam it is necessary to obtain a visa via a local Vietnamese embassy, an E-Visa, or a visa on arrival (VOA).
Which visa is best?
For the cheapest, fastest and most efficient option the Vietnam visa on arrival (VOA) is likely to be the most appealing, but it is only suitable for air travellers. If you are planning to arrive in Vietnam by seaport or land border crossing, you will need to apply for a visa in advance from a Vietnamese embassy.
With the VOA you do not receive a full visa before travelling. Instead, you get a “letter of approval” which is issued by a third-party travel agent or tour operator based in Vietnam. This pre-approval letter is enough to board your flight and on arrival at one of the international airports (Danang, Hanoi, or Ho Chi Minh City) you visit the appropriate immigration visa counter to get the official visa stamp.
The wait time at the airport for the visa stamp can be anything from 15-60 minutes, but usually the shorter period unless you arrive at a particularly busy time.
How long do I need to plan ahead?
The typical processing time for the visa to Vietnam is in the region of 2-3 business days. This is subject to completing the relevant application form and paying the applicable service fee to the visa agent. Once the visa application is processed, you will receive the “letter of approval” via email which must be printed and taken to Vietnam.
However, for the travellers that leave things to the last minute, there is the option to put a rush on the approval letter subject to an extra fee. It is even possible for the visa approval letter to be issued within 2-4 working hours, but the faster the service the more expensive it costs.
Other useful options:
For travellers that wish to avoid the possibility of a delay at the airport and waiting in a long queue at the visa counter there is the option to apply for airport fast-track at an extra $25. This basically puts you at the front of the queue when you arrive at the airport to make it possible to get on with your Vietnam holiday as soon as possible.
So if you want to make sure the visa process is expedited as fast as possible, you want to start making arrangements with a lot of time to spare, or in the event of needing to organise the urgent Vietnam visa you do have the option to use a rush service.
HOW TO APPLY CHEAP VIETNAM VISA