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The difference between Vietnam visa on arrival and e-visa

From 1 February 2017, the travellers coming from 40 countries have 1 additional option to get Vietnam visa called e-visa (electronic visa). This is the new system to reduce barriers in visa processing, which is beneficial to the tourists staying in Vietnam less than 30 days.

At the moment, there are up to 3 ways to obtain a visa for Vietnam, consisting of:

  1. Obtain the visa at Vietnam embassy or consulate;
  2. Obtain the visa on arrival or
  3. Obtain an e-visa.

The first option is made offline at the Vietnam embassy or consulate while the following two options are made online. In this post, you can find the brief description of two online options as well as the difference between them:

ItemVisa on arrivalE-visa
Issuing authorityVietnam Immigration DepartmentVietnam Immigration Department
BeneficiariesAll visitors travel to Vietnam by airCitizens of 40 countries in the list: http://www.visumvietnamonline.com/blog/list-of-40-countries-whose-citizens-can-apply-for-e-visa-for-vietnam-from-2017/
Purpose of visitVacation, business, family or friend visit, and othersVacation
Visa validity- 1 month single/multiple entry;
- 3 months single/multiple entry;
- 6 months multiple entry;
- 1 year multiple entry.
1 month single entry
Visa feeDepending on visa type, refunded in case your visa application is refusedUS $25, non-refundable in case your visa application is refused
How to get?1. Go online at http://www.visumvietnamonline.com/apply-online/ and complete the form;
2. Make payment of service fee;
3. Receive the visa approval letter via email;
4. Get visa stamped at Vietnam airport upon arrival by presenting original passport, photos, entry and exit form and stamping fee in cash.
1. Go online to http://www.immigration.gov.vn and complete the form and attach it with photos of yourself and your passport page;
2. Make payment of visa fee;
3. You will then be provided with a digital code to check the application progress and print the e-visa once it has been issued.
Processing time2 working days, 1 working day or even a few hours to receive the visa approval letterNot sooner than 3 working days to know if your Vietnam visa application is approved or not
Entry gateSix (06) international airports in Vietnam, consisting of Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi, Cat Bi Airport in Hai Phong, Da Nang Airport in Da Nang, Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, Cam Ranh Airport in Nha Trang and Phu Quoc Airport in Phu Quoc.Twenty eight (28) entry gates including 8 international airports, 13 international border gates, and 7 seaports across Vietnam
WarningIt may, but just sometimes, take you up to 30 minutes or 1 hour to get visa stamped at Vietnam airport if there are too many people arriving at the same time.As this kind of visa is very new, of which some certain airlines or even immigration staff at the airports may have not been aware and therefore may refuse it, you should check with your airlines in advance to avoid this.

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