Vietnam is a country in Southeast Asia with a population of over 95 million people. The country is famous for its many tourist destinations, including Ha Long Bay and Sapa, and for its vibrant cities like Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi, the capital. Nearly every one of the millions of tourists who visit the country each year needs some form of visa to enter in a tourist capacity. Many of those visitors elect for the visa on arrival. However, as a response to the demand, the Vietnamese government has also introduced the option for an online electronic visa, or eVisa, in an attempt to simplify and expedite the visa application process.
Vietnamese Visa on Arrival
The visa on arrival has traditionally been the easiest way for tourists to get a visa to Vietnam. Travelers fill out a form and electronically upload it, along with the visa fee (paid via debit or credit card), prior to travel. Once the form, which asks for basic details such as name, address, date of birth, and passport details has been received by Vietnamese travel authorities, it typically takes around two business days to be processed. From there, travelers will carry a hard copy of the approval form with them to their port of entry. Remember that visas on arrival require two passport-sized photos to be handed over to immigration authorities.
Vietnamese Visa Stamping Fee
Once travelers have collected their visa on arrival, they will be redirected to the normal immigration line where they will have their passport stamped. In addition to the fee, which was paid online prior to travel, each individual will be required to pay what is called a visa on arrival stamping fee. The visa stamping fee depends on which type of tourist visa was acquired, as there are different fees for single and multiple entry visas, as well as for one, three, six, or 12-month visas. The visa on arrival stamping fee must be paid in cash as no immigration offices can accept debit or credit cards. Both USD and VND are accepted.
There are currently 81 countries all around the world, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and most European countries, that are now eligible for the Vietnamese eVisa.
Similarly to the visa on arrival, the eVisa is applied for online, and a response can be expected within one to two business days. The eVisa only allows for stays of up to 30 days on a single entry, meaning if a traveler exits Vietnam before those 30 days are up, they will be required to obtain a new visa before re-entering Vietnam.
Each applicant will be required to give basic details such as their name, date of birth, address, and passport details and then pay the application fee by debit or credit card. Once approved, there is no stamping fee required upon arrival, meaning the application fee is the only payment that is needed for travelers holding an eVisa.
Why Choose the eVisa?
Because of the straightforward process of applying for and obtaining an eVisa, it is recommended that travelers choose this option when they are making their travel arrangements, except in cases when they are applying for a multiple-entry visa or for stays of longer than 30 days. Not only is the eVisa simple to obtain, but it is also cheaper as it doesn’t require a second payment made at the airport, and quicker, as travelers can go ahead and enter the immigration line straight ahead instead of waiting to pick up their visa on arrival.