Vietnam Visa Policy

Published on 02 March 2017 - Written by William S. Looney

Visa policy Vietnam

Vietnam visa - Vietnam visa policy

Vietnam visa exemption

As stated by Vietnam visa policy, these nationalities whose citizens are not required to get a visa to Vietnam are included in the Vietnam visa waiver list:


Name of countries

Maximum length of stay



15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days


15 days

United Kingdom

15 days



14 days


30 days


30 days


15 days

South Korea

15 days


30 days


30 days


30 days


14 days


21 days


30 days


30 days



90 days (from 11/8/2017)

  • APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) Holders from Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member economies for visits of 60 days at the maximum.
  • Foreigners and Vietnamese with foreign passports entering, existing or residing in Phu Quoc Island will be exempt with entry visas within a temporary residing period which does not exceed 30 days. In the case that a foreigner arriving at an international border gate of Vietnam (including airways and seaways), staying at the transit area of such border gate and then transiting to Phu Quoc Island will also be exempt with an entry visa as prescribed. (Decision No.80/2013/QD-TTg).

Visitors who hold diplomatic or official passports of the following countries do not need a visa to visit Vietnam either.

  • Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan.
  • Bangladesh, Belarus, Brazil, Bulgaria.
  • Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic.
  • Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary.
  • India, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan
  • Malta, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar.
  • Nicaragua, North Korea, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland.
  • Romania, Russia, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland.
  • Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela.

In this case of policy visa for Vietnam, you will be granted a 1-month/3-month, single/multiple entry visa, depending on your nationality.

Visa policies on granting Vietnam visa for foreigners

According to visa policy for Vietnam, foreigners who plan to visit the country must acquire either a visa from the Vietnam Embassy or Consulates or a Vietnam visa on arrival via travel agencies if they do not come from one of the exempt countries or eligible countries for electronic visas.

Two most currently available visa types, apart from the Vietnam Embassy visa, are visa on arrival and e-visa. Each type has its own requirements and benefits so that travelers should carefully review details of each type to determine which best suits your travel needs.

Vietnam Embassy visa

Vietnam visa - Vietnam visa policy

This is a traditional way of getting a Vietnam visa. To get this type of visa, you need to visit the Embassy or Consulates of Vietnam directly to complete all the procedures.

The document requirements include a completed visa application form with signature and a photo attached, an original passport and passport sized photos recently taken. The application must be sent in person or by post to the embassy. The visa fee varies according to each embassy and it is a non-refundable fee. You will receive your passport together with the Vietnam visa after the processing time of at least seven days.

Vietnam visa on arrival

Vietnam visa - Vietnam visa policy

With this visa-getting method, foreign passport holders can get Vietnam visa through travel agent such as Greenvisa - a government registered firm that can arrange an approval letter to help you get a visa at the arrival airport. You will then receive the Vietnam letter of approval which you have to present at the Vietnamese airport along with your passport and two passport photos to receive a visa stamp. Vietnam on arrival visa is an easier and more convenient method to get a legal visa to Vietnam compared to the traditional one. It is an ideal solution for those who live far away from the Vietnam Embassy or those whose country has no Embassy of Vietnam.

E-visa Vietnam (Electronic visa)


Vietnam visa - Vietnam visa policy

As the name of it, e-visa is mainly based on the Internet. The Vietnam E-visa has a short processing time, approximately three business days, and can be applied online. Travelers will need to scan your passport, submit photos, and pay an application fee to apply for this visa type. The e-visa is valid for a maximum of 30 days, for a single entry only. However, as mentioned in Decree No. 07/2017/ND-CP, there are only 40 countries that eligible for the e-visa scheme as the list below:

  • Citizens from these following countries are eligible to apply for an e-visa: USA, Argentina, Armenia, Ireland, Poland, Belarus, Bulgaria, Brunei, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Cuba, Timor Leste, Azerbaijan, Hungary, Greece, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Myanmar, Mongolia, Panama, Peru, Romania, China (except Chinese e-passport holders), Uruguay, and Venezuela.
  • Citizens from these following countries may apply for an e-visa, in addition to being allowed to stay visa-exempt for 15 days: United Kingdom, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Russia, Japan, South Korea, Phillippines (citizens may stay 21 days without a visa).

Vietnam visa extension/ renewal

Vietnam visa - Vietnam visa policy

You have to acquire permission from the government if you want to stay longer in Vietnam. In this case, you are suggested to visit the Vietnam Immigration Department in Hanoi, Da Nang or Ho Chi Minh city to fill in and submit some Vietnam visa application forms to get visa extensions Vietnam or contact us to do it on your behalf.

Extend Vietnam visa

Remember that the extension is only valid for a 1 or 3 months period. If you want to extend your visa for a period of 1 month, your current visa must be a 1 or 3 month, single or multiple entry visa. If you want to extend your visa for a period of 3 months, your current visa must be a 3 months single or multiple entry one.

Renew a visa

Renewing a visa means you will be granted a new visa sticker and stamp on your passport with the new duration. You are allowed to renew your visa only for a maximum period of 3 months. Especially, Vietnam visa renewal is only available for visitors who entered Vietnam with a visa exemption.

Visa policy of Vietnam relating to visa on arrival

Law on foreigners' entry, exit, transit and residence in Vietnam No. 47/2014/QH13

The new law which replaces the National Ordinance 2000 includes nine chapters and 55 articles stating specifically who is responsible for what in terms of Vietnam visa issuance, and who can get a visa to enter Vietnam and for how long.

Of the 55 articles, the following selected articles will help you understand how and why we – Green Travel Universal can legally assist you in getting the approval letter.

Article 10. Conditions for grant of a visa (visa policy Vietnam)

1. Having a passport or an international travel document.

2. Being invited or guaranteed by an agency, organization or individual in Vietnam, except the cases prescribed in Clause 3, Article 17 of this Law.

3. Not falling into the cases of suspension from entry prescribed in Article 21 of this Law.

4. Papers proving the purposes of entry are required when applying for a visa in the following cases:

a/ Foreigners who come to make investment must have papers proving their investment in Vietnam in accordance with the Law on Investment;

b/ Foreigners practicing law in Vietnam must have a practice license in accordance with the Law on Lawyers;

c/ Foreigners who come to work in Vietnam must have work permits in accordance with the Labor Code;

d/ Foreigners who come to study in Vietnam must have admission documents of Vietnamese schools or educational institutions.

Article 18. Grant of visas at border gates

1. A foreigner may be granted a visa at an international border gate in the following cases:

a/ He/she departs from a country without a Vietnamese agency competent to grant visas;

b/ He/she has to travel through many countries before arriving in Vietnam;

c/ He/she enters Vietnam on a tour organized by an international travel agent in Vietnam;

d/ He/she is a crewmember on board a foreign ship anchoring at a Vietnamese seaport and wishes to leave Vietnam through another border gate;

dd/ He/she enters Vietnam to attend the funeral of a relative, or to visit a seriously ill relative;

e/ He/she enters Vietnam to join in the handling of urgent incidents, search and rescue, prevention and control of natural disasters or epidemics or for other special purposes at the request of a competent Vietnamese agency.

2. Foreigners who are eligible for visa grant at international border gates shall submit their passports or international travel documents and filled visa applications stuck with their photos, to immigration control units. Information on under-14 children who share passports with their parents or guardians shall be declared on visa applications of their parents or guardians.

3. Immigration control units shall examine and check information against notices of the immigration management agency before granting visas.

Decree No. 92/2007/ND-CP

According to visa policy to Vietnam in Article 13 of Decree No. 92/2007/ND-CP, international travel agencies have the legal right to ask a competent state agency (the Vietnam Immigration Department, or VID) to approve the entry, exit, or transit of foreign travelers. This decree details the implementation of some articles of the laws on tourism, such as regulations regarding the rights and obligations of international tourist agencies. Therefore, they can legally request the VID’s assistance in approving approval letter for Vietnam visa for their applicants.

Article 13. Rights and obligations of international travel enterprises

1. An international travel business has the following rights: 

a) To enjoy business autonomy and take responsibility for tourism business activities;

b) To ask a competent state agency to approve the entry, exit or transit of visitors;

c) To have their lawful tourism business activities secured by the State;

d) To take part in tourism promotion activities; join in professional associations;

e) Other rights provided for by law.

2. An international travel agency has the following responsibilities:

a) To set up, register and conduct its business as stated by law;

b) To hire only tourist guides who own international tourists guide’s cards to guide foreign visitors and observe regulations on the employment of laborers;

c) To inform the provincial-level state agency charge of tourism of the replacement of its travel business administrator within 30 days after such replacement;

d) To monitor and make full and accurate statistics on the number of tourists to whom it has provided tourism services;

e) To guarantee the conditions for, an interests of, tourists in accordance with the concluded agreements;

f) Other obligations prescribed by law.

Written by William S. Looney in June 2017 (New updated Vietnam visa policy)

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