2022 IMPORTANT UPDATE: According to current Vietnam entry requirements, there are only 3 types of tourist visa available: 1) free-visa available to limited passports, 2) evisa, which you can get online, and 3) visa issued by a Vietnamese embassy or consulate. The tourist visas issued or obtained by 1 & 3 can be extended, but E-visas cannot be extended.
Under different circumstances, travellers or expats in Vietnam get themselves in the situation where they have to extend their visa or worse, have overstayed their visa. This problem can be resolved depending on how long you have overstayed or how long you want to extend your visa.
Whether you are travelling in Vietnam or living here, you will find the fastest way to do your Vietnam visa extension, from checking the different ways to do it, fees for Vietnam visa extension, and extra tips too.
For faster navigation, you can use the table of contents below.
RELATED POST: Types of Visa in Vietnam
HOW TO EXTEND YOUR VIETNAM VISA
There are two ways to extend your visa; the first one is:
Visa run to the border
The most common for travellers and expats, visa run to the border is simple. A traveller or an expat exit Vietnam and go through a land or air border and come back a few days later. In Ho Chi Minh City or Hoi An, some travellers and expats cross the border to Cambodia and Laos, this is the fastest and the cheapest way to extend their visa.
In this way, you can either obtain a visa invitation letter before you leave Vietnam or you can apply for a visa in the country (either through the embassy or a travel agency) where you will be doing your visa run to.
If you are good with hunting cheap flights or your budget permits, you can consider Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, and the Philippines for your visa run.
REMEMBER: You can’t use an invitation letter through the land border unless you get it from a travel agency and ask them to specify the border name on the letter.
Extending your visa without leaving
The other way is to extend your visa without leaving Vietnam. Here, you need to go to a travel agency that can assist you in getting additional days on your visa, it could be affordable depending on the agency, your nationality and the length of extension that you want.
Which is cheaper or easier
They are almost the same, the only difference is, extending your visa without leaving Vietnam is a lot less hassle.
When doing a visa run, you will have to pay for a visa to the country you are running to, pay for accommodation, meals, transportation. While if you decide to fly, the flight ticket prices are harder to predict than bus tickets.
Another thing to consider, some travellers experience more interrogation when doing visa run via air (crossing airport immigration), although this is an infrequent scenario.
EXTEND YOUR VIETNAM VISA WITHOUT LEAVING VIETNAM
If you want to extend your Vietnam visa without leaving Vietnam, this is possible. However, it’s not available to all nationalities. Those who are eligible can only extend for one month (1) and the price depends on your nationality. If you need help in extending your visa, email us on hello [at] movetovietnam [dot] com ([email protected]).
There are only three options for extending your visa without leaving Vietnam:
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EXTENDING YOUR VISA THROUGH VISA RUN TO THE BORDER
Before you go and run to the border; first you have to decide if you are doing a land border or air travel. This will affect the way you will obtain a visa:
If land border
You can either go to Cambodia or Laos, however, if you don’t have a passport from Southeast Asia or other Asian countries, there is a big chance you will have to pay for a visa ($35-$40). Check this Cambodia visa guide and Laos visa guide to see if you are exempted.
Next, decide if you will get a visa through a travel agency in Vietnam (specify the land border if you enter back, also they only give invitation letter), visa from the Embassy or Consulate (both Laos and Cambodia have these), or go through a visa agent in Cambodia or Laos.
If you do either through Embassy or visa agent outside Vietnam, you will not need to pay for stamp fee since you will get the visa sticker right on your passport. If you go through an invitation letter, you will have to pay the stamp fee when you go through the immigration unless it’s an evisa, you only get a visa stamp.
If air travel
With air travel, you can go to a country where you don’t need a visa to enter, doing this, you can easily apply for an invitation letter or an evisa online since these two are very easy to use when entering the airports.
If there is a Vietnamese Embassy or Consulate in your visa run country, you can apply for a visa there.
How much is the new visa
Here is the expected cost when extending your Vietnam visa:
|365*for USA citizens||Tourist||Multiple||$60||$50|
|EVISA – 30*limited nationalities can apply for this||Tourist||Single||$25||$0|
BUS OPTIONS TO THE LAND BORDERS
If you decide to cross the land border instead, check below the buses and border you can cross:
|Ho Chi Minh City||Siem Reap (Cambodia)||Moc Bai, Bin Hiep, Dinh Ba||$8|
|Hanoi||Luang Prabang (Laos)||Nam Canh||$40|
|Hue, Hoi An, Da Nang,||Vientiane (Laos)||Lao Bao|
HOW TO USE YOUR NEW VISA THROUGH BORDER RUN (BY AIR)
If you decide to do a border run, you can choose to get your new visa invitation letter from a travel agency or obtain the actual visa from the embassy (of the country where you went for the border run). You can also get an invitation letter from a travel agency before leaving Vietnam and get the stamped sticker when you enter again.
Here’s how to do it:
- Secure your visa invitation letter from a travel agency or online before you leave or simply leave the country and find a travel agency in the country of your border run.
- If you already have the letter, present this at the person-in-charge when you cross the border back to Vietnam. If you prefer to get the visa with the sticker on, just let your travel agency or the embassy to do this.
- If you use an invitation letter, you have to pay $25 or $50 for the sticker at the border.
Note: Invitation letters can only be used when arriving at major airports. You need to get the actual visa if you are crossing the border by land unless you find an agency in Vietnam that will address the invitation letter to the specific land border.
HOW TO APPLY AND USE YOUR NEW VISA THROUGH BORDER RUN (BY LAND)
If you don’t want to do your visa run by air, you can do this by land as well. It’s probably the easiest and cheapest way to do it. Doing the visa this way will get you a visa sticker right away (not invitation letter), which you can use when crossing a land border. Here’s the step by step guide:
Take a bus from Vietnam to the neighbouring country:
- If coming from Ho Chi Minh City, you may want to go to Phnom Penh, Cambodia (4-6 hour bus ride)
- If coming from Hanoi, you may want to go to Luang Prabang, Laos (27-30 hour bus ride)
- If you are coming from Hoi An, you can go to Pakse (8-12 hour bus ride)
Go to a travel agency or the consulate or embassy of Vietnam
- In Cambodia, you can go to Lucky! Lucky! Motorbike shop, behind the repair shop, is a travel agency that I personally used when doing my visa run
- If going to Luang Prabang, there is a Vietnamese consulate you can go to and get the visa sticker – read more about it here
Use your new visa when entering Vietnam
Price and costs of the new visa sticker
The visa prices depend on where you are applying from. The visa cost should be cheaper from the embassy or consulate but sometimes can take longer and require some hassles in getting the requirements together. While going through the agencies will ease the entire process.
I hope you find answers to this article about extending your Vietnam visa.