You will need a Visa to enter Vietnam. Make sure you get the correct visa for the purpose and destination of your trip.
The safest option is to get a visa from the Vietnamese Embassy before you travel. If you plan to leave Vietnam and re-enter from another country make sure you get a multiple visit visa.
There are legitimate companies that can arrange visas on arrival, but you must organise this before you arrive in Vietnam. We have been told that the personal information of multiple applicants can be included in letters confirming visa approval, which is normal procedure for the Vietnamese Immigration Department and any alteration to the letter would invalidate visa approval. If you are concerned about this you should apply for a visa through the nearest Vietnamese Embassy. There are also a number of bogus companies claiming to offer this service. The Embassy and Consulate General cannot confirm whether a company has a legitimate arrangement in place.
Overstaying your Vietnamese visa without authority is a serious matter and you may be delayed from travel until a fine is paid. Check the visa validity and conditions carefully.
Vietnam allows nationals of 17 countries to enter Vietnam without a visa for varying time periods. In June 2014 it was proposed to extend the visa exemption for tourists from the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong and Taiwan. In August 2014 Ministry of Tourism proposed to Government to extend the visa exemption for tourists from France, Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and India. In September 2014 the proposed list was further shortened to Australia, France, Germany, India and the UK.
Citizens of the following 17 countries do not require a visa to visit Vietnam (allowed length of stay in days is shown in parentheses):
- Brunei (14)
- Cambodia (30)
- Denmark (15)
- Finland (15)
- Indonesia (30)
- Japan (15)
- Kyrgyzstan (30)
- Laos (30)
- Malaysia (30)
- Myanmar (14)
- Norway (15)
- Philippines (21)
- Russia (15)
- Singapore (30)
- South Korea (15)
- Sweden (15)
- Thailand (30)
Citizens of Denmark, Finland, Japan, Norway, Russia, South Korea and Sweden are required to hold a passport for valid for at least 6 months on arrival and they also must make 30 day pause between two arrivals.
There are a number of local crossing points on the borders with Cambodia and Laos which are for nationals of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. Check locally before travelling to these points.
When checking into a hotel, you will have to surrender your passport so that the hotel can register your presence with the local police. Make sure your passport is returned and keep it in a safe place. Don’t use your passport as a deposit for renting a hotel room. If you are staying in private accommodation, you will still be expected to register. Ask your host to help you with this as soon as you arrive. You may be fined if you don’t register.
Yellow Fever vaccination is required for travellers arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.