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Visa's for 3 months Travelling: Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam

Visa's for 3 months Travelling: Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam

Sep 26th, 2011, 03:15 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 18
Visa's for 3 months Travelling: Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam

Hi folks,
Thanks for the advise you've been providing so far - This forum rocks.

So, a bit of info first:
My GF and I are spending 3 months travelling SE Asia.

NOVEMBER: Landing in Thailand (Bangkok) doing a bit of travelling about Thailand first.

Then we hope to visit Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, with the hope of being back to Thailand for Christmas (So let's say Dec 23rd)

We then intend to spend the rest of the time back in Thailand until our departure home on Feb 8th 2012


Now, assume we want as much paper-work done beforehand, and don't mind having to pay a little premium to do so

Questions:
What would be the best type of Visa for Thailand? Remembering that we'll be entering Thailand (Nov 8th), leaving Thailand for Laos/Cambodia/Vietnam, and then returning into Thailand until Feb 8th 2012 (a grand total of 3 months)

We had initially intended to cross borders over land, but, with Vietnam for example, we would have to send our Passports to the UK (We live in Ireland) to be stamped beforehand. I was told this can be avoided by flying into Vietnam instead, pre-paying online and just getting a temp visa in the airport.

Laos/Cambodia - no clue where to start here.

Remember that between Laos/Vietnam/Cambodia it will only be a grand total of about 6 weeks, so pretty short-term


Any help on where to start with visa's for all 4 countries would be greatly appreciated
alt123 is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 06:16 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,943
suggest that you look on line at each country and see what their rules are and what the options are for irish citizens..

each country has seperate and unique rules for citizens of specific other countries.... thus the rules for a usa citizen are different from the rules of a UK citizen..
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 07:21 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 12,492
thailand

http://www.mfa.go.th/web/2482.php?id=2490


.. then google the other embassies and see what the official webpage says. Many countries yu can do do visa on arrival or pre-pay an e-visa. no need to use an agency.
lincasanova is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 07:33 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Your visas for Cambodia, and Laos are easy, as you can get them on arrival if you are flying in, or at some land borders. So let us know more about where you are entering those two countries and how long you will spend in each.

You are right that you can get a pre-arrnged visa for VN if you are flying in to HCMC or Hanoi. It is not a temporary visa, but is a regular visa. Here in the US, you can get a "loose leaf visa" for VN, where you send in all the forms and payment to the embassy with a copy of your passport and receive a loose-leaf page to stick into your passport. See if that is available in the UK.

Thailand is more complicated. You will receive visa-free entry when you arrive good for 30 days. When you return, you need a visa for 60 days. I'm not sure where the best place is for you to apply for this in your travels, as Thailand has tightened some of their visa rules. Someone here will know more, but you may want to call/email the Thai embassy in your own country.
Kathie is online now  
Sep 26th, 2011, 07:50 AM
  #5  
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 18
Thank's for the info.


THAILAND
In-case it helps anyone, I found the Thailand Visa Application here: http://www.thaiconsulateireland.com/visaapplication.htm

For Thailand, we will arrive on Nov 8th and probably stay for about 3 weeks (21 days). Our next entry into Thailand will be around 20th December, staying until Feb 8th, so around 51 days.

My understanding of this, is that we need to get a double-entry visa (Is each one valid for 60 days?) - I don't have a problem with this, but it's going to be about 80euro each (so 160euro in total)


VIETNAM
We are not certain on our dates of arrival (within a few days), but as we do not expect to stay more than about a week in Vietnam, that shouldn't be an issue (ie. we'd unlikely over-stay our visa). However, I found a post here: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntre...45232#18645232 (Post 10) which states we can get our Visa's a few days before we enter Vietnam in Laos which would also make sense - I guess the option here is just down to personal choice - Personally i'd prefer to have it done online in advance so that we don't have to be running around Laos (although the post above in the Lonely Planet forum makes it sound very easy)


LAOS & VIETNAME
I found this blog very useful: http://helen4ian.blogspot.com/2011/0...eave-your.html
alt123 is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 08:50 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 373
Having done a trip through Asia for months myself I found it quite handy to get visas as I went along as some would have expired by the time I arrived. As stated above, you must check the websites for the countries' consular services to determine which you need and when you might want to get them. For instance, the only one I got ahead was for India. Then, while in Delhi I got a China visa. In China I got my Laos visa as I was traveling between China & Laos by boat so no visa on arrival. By doing it this way you can be more spontaneous in your travel and not worry about no visa or expired visa.
joannay is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 09:04 AM
  #7  
 
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We got our last visa for Vietnam in Laos (Vientienne). We used a local travel agent who got it sorted in a couple of days days. Do take care to make sure they date the visa for the correct date we didn't notice that ours was valid for one month from the date of application until we were already in Saigon and then had to cut our time there short as we stayed in Laos for a week after the getting the visa.
crellston is offline  
Sep 26th, 2011, 07:56 PM
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With our Vietnam visa it was obtained a few weeks in advance from the Embassy in Australia but the visa was stated to run from a date which was our expected arrival date. The visa was processed in record time, one day only.

Lao visas we usually get on entry. The regulations call for two passport photos of exact sizes and exact reuirements but the officals only seem to take one. They also tend to stick a great big staple through the photo which makes a joke ot the exact requirements. My wife sometimes gets a bonus extra months visa because she grew up in Lao while myself and our adult children only get a one month visa. So much for communist equality.

We found Cambodian visas are best obtained online if entering by land. They are not cheap.

Thai visas are for 30 days only but if you leave and reenter by land the return visa is for 14 days. If you re enter by air you should get another 30 days. You can get extensions in Bkk but probably best to get this sorted before you go.

With all the above the requirements and time limits change frequenttly so check with the embassy. Like Crelleston says check your passport carefully as I have seen a few mistakes made in the visa validity dates entered on passports, especially when dealing with dates at the changeover of a year.
gmoz is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 01:01 PM
  #9  
 
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Did anyone have a hard time getting a visa on arrival at the airport in Ho Chi Minh City?
allenberger544 is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 01:28 PM
  #10  
 
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There is no visa on arrival for VN, only a pre-arranged visa. If you have the email showing your pre-arranged visa it should not be a problem to get it stamped into your passport (for a stamping fee).
Kathie is online now  
Sep 28th, 2011, 02:30 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 12,492
I have read about possible fake e-visas being sold on internet. how can we be sure of the agency for the e-visa for VN?. I did not find a direct link on the VN embassy page for e-visa. Or didn't I look well enough?
lincasanova is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 03:13 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
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Whether the on arrival or prearranged visas are a good idea depends on where you plan to enter the countries. The most used ports of entry allow them while the lesser used ones sometimes do not. If all your entry points are airports, for instance, they should be fine. But if you plan to travel on the ground and enter, say, at a river crossing or on a bus in the boonies then better to have the visa in your passport or possibly be turned away. I always feel better if I have the visa in any case and you can often get them in the country you're in before. For instance, Thailand or China before Laos, India before China, these all being places I've gotten visas along the way.

I'm now planning a trip to Asia and I'll leave home with a visa for China, my first stop. Then along the way - Guangzhou or Nanning - I'll get my visa for Vietnam for my arrival near Hanoi by train from China. I wouldn't want to arrive at that border without the visa, just an email. It may, in fact, be possible to do it that way but one needs to go to the bother of getting the online letter so why not just get the visa?

There are differences for every nationality's passport entering, time frame (how long is the visa good for entering from issue date, will it expire while you're in the country), different ports of entry - check on all these things and more. Scour the consulate websites for details, not the websites of agents selling visa service, so you don't get tripped up. It's not hard, you just need to pay attention.
joannay is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 07:29 PM
  #13  
 
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Thailand - The visitors 30 day stamp and a standard tourist visa expire when you exit the country regardless of how many days you have been there.

You can "stack" two or three tourist visas.

If you plan to come in and out of the country on several occasions you might look into a non immigrant "O" visa. These can be valid for up to one year and for an extra fee have a multiple re-entry stamp.
On re-entry each time you receive up to 90 days.
Both tourist and Non immigrant visas have to be obtained outside Thailand and in the case of the "O" the number of places is restricted. - check the Thai govt web site (above)
khunwilko is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 07:30 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
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PS - I'm assuming you are from one of the 43 countries including US and UK that have tis arrangement .

You can get a non imm"O" for 90 days.
khunwilko is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 07:50 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
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Khunwilko when you are "stacking" visas is the rule still in force that you get 14 days if arriving by land but another 30 days if arrive by air. This rule was being enforced previously but I am not sure if it is still being enforced.
gmoz is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 07:53 PM
  #16  
 
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For the correct and proper information from the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs: http://www.mfa.go.th/web/2637.php
Hanuman is offline  
Sep 28th, 2011, 08:24 PM
  #17  
 
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Just checked the supplied link and its actually15 days if arriving by land
http://www.mfa.go.th/web/2482.php?id=2490
gmoz is offline  
Sep 29th, 2011, 02:30 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 443
The Thai visa regulations change almost on a daily basis. Even Thai immigration lawyers phone up Immigration Office to get up to date information.
For Lao - 30 day visa on arrival. This is renewable in Vientiane.
Two passport photos are required, tough as pointed out, generally only one is taken. The cost varies accoring to nationality. Swiss Russians and some ASEAN countries are free. Canadians pay the most at $42 USD. Pay in USD rather than Baht as the exchange rate is miserable.
Vientianeboy is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2011, 09:44 PM
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gmoz - tourist visa and the "stamp" you get arriving by land are not the same.

If you arrive with no visa you get 15 days by land and 30 by air - if you have a tourist visa you get what it says on th visa...BUT - when you leave that particular visa expires - whether you've been inn the country for 60 days or a day.
khunwilko is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2011, 09:48 PM
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PS - VOA and the 30day stamp are not the same thing - some countries (e.g India) can gt a visa on arrival.
43 countries - or thereabouts, - can have a visa-less entry for 30days or 15 by land.

check the list on the Thai Govt site -

http://www.mfa.go.th/web/2637.php
khunwilko is offline  
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