Updated Vietnam visa exemption policy

To boost Vietnam tourism industry, Vietnam has introduced new visa policy coming into effect from January, 1st, 2016. Accordingly, a new list of visa waivers is released with increasing number of exempted countries for both ordinary and non-ordinary passport holders.

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Vietnam visa exemption policy

1. For ordinary passport holders

Normally, foreigners need Vietnam visa to be granted to enter Vietnam no matter what purposes of their entries are. However, for some special countries, Vietnam proposes either unilateral or bilateral visa waiver policies which allow their nationals to enter Vietnam and to stay here for a limited duration freely without being required to get a visa beforehand. The majority of overseas visitors hold ordinary passports. For these subjects, visa exemption policy is applied to specific countries as follows:

✔ Nationals of Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore can enjoy their stay in Vietnam with visa - free for no more than 30 days.

✔ Nationals of Philippines are free from visas for residing up to 21 days.

✔ A fifteen - day staying without a visa is applicable to nationals of Japan, South Korea, Denmark, Russia, Sweden, Norway, Finland, UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain

✔ Brunei and Myanmar nationals are eligible for visa exemption policy for staying up to 14 days.

Vietnam visa waiver policy is applied for all purposes of entry with single entry only. If nationals from these above countries wish to visit Vietnam more than one time with visa-free, then the duration between the preceding exit and the next entry must be more than 30 days. Entries sooner than that duration or residence for longer than authorized period of stay will require travellers Vietnam visa as other normal countries.

Nationals from countries other than the said ones expecting to travel to Vietnam will need to arrange a visa in one of two ways: applying either in person or by post at a nearby Vietnam Embassy, or applying online through travel agents to be issued a visa on arrival at Vietnam international airport.

2. Non-ordinary passport holders

✔ The holders of APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) can also be beneficial from this waiver policy which allows them to access Vietnam without a visa for no more than 60 days.

✔ The citizens of Armenia, Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, Dominican, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, France, Hungary, India, Iraq, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Myanmar, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Russia, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovak, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE, Uruguay, Venezuela holding diplomatic or official passport may enjoy free-visa entry for a maximum of 90 days while nationals from Angola, Azerbaijan, China, Croatia, Kazakhstan, Myanmar with the same kinds of passport can reside in Vietnam for 30 days.

✔ Diplomatic or official passport holders from Afghanistan, Albania, Belarus, Cuba, North Korea, Nicaragua, Romania are exempted from a visa.

✔ Diplomatic passport holders from Czech, Estonia, Germany, France, Israel, Italy, Poland, Spain, and Switzerland are granted 90 day stay with visa exemption while 60 days are maximum time of residence for Uzbekistani diplomatic passport holders and for Iranians, this period is only one month.

For all cases of visa exemption, one important requirement that travellers from these nationals should take into account before arriving to Vietnam is that their passports must be valid for at least six months, counted from their dates of arrival to Vietnam and there must be at least one empty page left in their passports for visa stamp.

Read more: Vietnam entry requirements for foreigners


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