This year has seen a massive shift in policy for Indians wanting to travel abroad with Visa processes being uncomplicated for everyone around the home country. We’ve seen US Global Entry being approved for Indians (albeit it is still a pain to get it!), UAE, Qatar and Oman have started to issue Visa on Arrival for Indians. In fact, I had a pretty good experience with UAE Visa on Arrival at Dubai last month myself. Turns out getting a Vietnam Visa will join that list as well.
Earlier this year, Vietnam started a new program where they would issue e-visas directly to visitors from 40 countries. A few days ago, they added another 6 countries and India is one of them. Hence, some key countries for whose passports to which Vietnam now issues e-visas include:
The full list is here. The earlier process involved one to sign up with one of the million Vietnam visas on arrival sponsors online and pay them via credit card and then get a visa issued and waiting for you on arrival at the Vietnamese airport (Ha Noi, for instance). That process involved putting your name on a list which could have put your information at risk of circulation to people who shouldn’t know about it. Look at this from 3 years ago, where my name was on a list along with 11 unknown to me people.
Also, once you arrive in Vietnam, you waited on a crowded window for a sticker visa on your passport for about 45 minutes to an hour.
Fortunately, the new website is a government website (https://evisa.xuatnhapcanh.gov.vn/) and issues you a visa directly within 3 working days. You upload a copy of your passport, pay $25 directly and get a visa within 3 working days. The earlier process cost us more than $55 per person, so this is also significantly cheaper.
If you are planning to make a visit to Vietnam, things just got a lot easier and better. It should help you to get a cheaper visa for Vietnam, and explore a wonderful country with tonnes of pho and great Vietnamese iced coffee.
Have heard that some airlines are still not aware of this and ask for visa approval letters. Travelling by Indigo and don’t know if I should go for this. The airline is giving vague answers as per old rules
nice and informative ….thanks for posting
Ajay, great news. We have had similar good news from other countries lately. However, these are scattered in different posts on your site. Perfectly understandable as news items. However, may I suggest collecting all such info on one comprehensive reference document which tells which countries offer visa free, visa on arrival, evisa and similar facility for Indians? If such a document already exists, then a link will be useful for your readers.
Wasn’t it always the case. Since during my visit in 2009, it was an electronic Visa application for Indian Passport holders; and Visa comes in 5 working days.
@PB my understanding is, that a third party took money from you and got your papers over to immigration and get them to issue you an authorization to enter Vietnam. Then, you pay immigration again for a sticker on your passport. That was how it was in 2015 and for a few years before that. Now, you directly deal with immigration and no middlemen.
Oh. It seems Vietnam have gone archaic and immutable in their Visa processes in 2015.
In 2010 (apologies was not 2009), when I visited Vietnam, they had a simple online Visa application for Foreigners on the Immigration Department website (no 3rd Party involved) and online payment through credit card was also seamless. Although, the quirky aspect was the Visa confirmation received by email mentioned your name along with other passengers who were approved for the same visa period. Reminded me of a Lottery win. 😉 Oddly, I still reminisce it as the easiest Visa application ever made (i.e. no financials, US Visa or other details required).
On arrival, show the print out at a VOA counter, where they would stick your Visa on your passport and you head to the immigration officer to stamp it. Viola..
Sad to hear the loopholes you were made to jump…
@PB we are talking about the same process 2010 through 2017. Except it was not to the Immigration office but to a third party, and then you get on this list (as shown above in the picture), and go to the counter to get the sticker. Now, no more stickers. Directly a printout and then stamp on entring the country.