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Home Travel Guide Vietnam Travel Guide How to Apply for Vietnam Visa: A Simple Guide to Take You Through the Whole Process

How to Apply for Vietnam Visa: A Simple Guide to Take You Through the Whole Process


For those considering about traveling to Vietnam, before you dive into this article on how to apply for a Vietnam visa, first find out if you need a visa for Vietnam. Check out the complete list of visa-free countries in our general guide for Vietnam visa.

There are three ways to obtain a visa for Vietnam, applying online for an E-visa, applying in person at an embassy or a consulate, and applying on arrival. This article will take you through the Vietnam visa application process, requirement, and cost for each of the three methods.

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How to Get a Visa for Vietnam Online - Vietnam E-visa

Travelers who are not eligible for Vietnam visa exemption can apply for a Vietnam E-visa online on the official website. Currently, people from 80 countries can apply for the E-visa online. It’s important to note that you can only apply for a Vietnam E-visa for tourism and entertainment purposes. For other purposes, you must apply in person.

A code will send to your email so you can print your visa. The Vietnam E-visa is only valid for up to 90 days with single and multiple entry, usually takes no more than 3 working days to process it. Travelers may only enter the exit Vietnam with an E-visa through designated ports. Applying online is the easiest way to obtain a tourist visa for your Vietnam tour.

TIP: Travelers with an e-Visa can go directly to immigration counters upon arrival and do not need to queue at Visa on Arrival counters.

Required materials for a Vietnam E-visa application:

  • A passport valid for at least another six months with two blank pages
  • A 4×6cm (2×2 inches) photo in .jpg format (white background, looking straight ahead, without glasses)
  • A photo of your passport bio page in .jpg format
  • Your temporary address in Vietnam, ports of entry and exit
  • Debit or credit card for payment

Steps for a Vietnam E-visa application:

  • Start an application online on official website of Vietnam Immigration Department
  • Upload your photo and your passport bio page
  • Fill in the required information and complete the application
  • Pay an E-visa fee of $25
  • Wait for your E-visa to be processed (it takes about three working days)
  • Check your application status here
  • Once it is approved, download the PDF file, print two copies to bring with you when you travel for Vietnam

How to Apply for Vietnam Visa in Person at an Embassy or Consulate

Travelers can also apply for a Vietnamese visa in person at an embassy or consulate. There are a range of options depending on your traveling purpose and visa validity. For more information on Vietnam visa types and validity, check out our general guide.

Required materials for a Vietnam visa application in person:

  • A passport valid for at least another six months with two blank pages
  • 2 printed 4×6cm (2×2 inches) photos (white background, looking straight ahead, without glasses)
  • Completed Vietnam visa application form available for download on the embassy/consulate website or in office
  • Payment for Vietnam visa fee
  • Any other additional documents like a Letter of Invitation, Sponsorship, or an approval letter depending on your traveling purpose

Steps for a Vietnam visa application in person:

  • Contact the Vietnamese embassy or consulate near you to make an appointment and learn about any specific requirements
  • Collect the required documents (some of which you may submit through mail depending on the policy of your embassy/consulate)
  • Go to your appointment to submit your documents in person, and pay the Vietnam visa fee (the cost depends on your visa type, validity, service, and the embassy/consulate)
  • Wait for your Vietnam visa to be processed (1-7 working days depending on your specific case and chosen service, plus time for mailing unless you’re picking it up in the office)
  • Collect your passport in the office or your chosen location for mailing service
Vietnam Hoi An Lanterns
Hoi An Lanterns

How Long is the Processing Period for a Vietnam Visa

For applications online for Vietnamese E-visa, it takes about three working days to process.

For applications in person at an embassy/consulate:

  • Still in need of a letter of approval
    • 6-7 working days
    • 1-5 working days for expedited service
  • Already has a letter of approval or has no need for one
    • 3 working days
    • 24 hours for expedited service

How to Apply for an Urgent Vietnam Visa

If you’re in urgent need of a visa for Vietnam, there are expedited options for the processing period. This service costs extra on top of your Vietnam visa fee.

How to Apply for a Vietnam Visa on Arrival

If you are applying for Vietnam visa on arrival, you need an approval letter. Complete the Entry and Exit Form given to you on the airplane and hand it in to the Immigration Officers at the port of entry. Remember to bring cash for the Vietnam visa stamping fee. Read more about Vietnam visa on arrival.

How to Apply for Vietnam Visa for US citizens

US. citizens are required to get a visa for Vietnam but are eligible for an E-Visa. Applying online is the easiest way.

To apply in person, there are three embassy and consulates in the U. S., Vietnam Embassy in Washington DC, the Consulate General of Vietnam in San Francisco, and the Consulate General of Vietnam in Houston, Texas. You have to make the visa appointment in person, but you have the option of having your passport shipped back to you after the processing period.

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