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Visa On Arrival and 1 way Ticket

I plan on traveling to Hanoi Vietnam in late May or Early June.

I'll be coming in on a 3 month Tourist visa via the Visa On Arrival.

Now, depending on how things work out, I may extend that visa once or twice.

I thought I read somewhere when you come in as a tourist, you need a return ticket.

An open end departure ticket is very expensive. I'd rather not go that route.

So do I need a return ticket or is buying a 1 way ticket OK as a tourist?

Thanks,
Zep

Hi Zep.

There is no rules saying that you need return ticket so just dont worry. 1 way ticket is enough for you to get Vietnam visa on arrival. You must get a visa approval letter online first, take a flight to Vietnam and get stamped visa upon arrival airport. Needs any other info, drop me a message.

Suzan

Thanks, Suzan!

Navigating the rules and laws came become overwhelming for a first time visitor!

Zep

I emailed the Vietnam Embassy in the United States, if anyone is curious.

(Short version:  You need a return ticket if you want the Multiple Entry Visa)

Here the (form letter) Email I received from the Embassy:

HELLO,                             

THANK YOU FOR WRITING TO THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM.

FIRST OF ALL, THE CONSULAR SECTION OF THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM STRONGLY RECOMMENDS YOU TO HAVE THE VISA BEFORE YOU DEPART FOR VIETNAM.

THE TOTAL FEES ARE:

A. SINGLE ENTRY, 30 DAYS:  $80 PER VISA

B. SINGLE ENTRY, 90 DAYS: $110.00 PER VISA

C. MULTIPLE ENTRY, 30 DAYS: $135.00 PER VISA

D. MULTIPLE ENTRY, 90 DAYS: $160.00 PER VISA (COPY OF RETURN TICKET REQUIRED)

E. LONG TERM (VISA APPROVAL REQUIRED):

6 MONTH SINGLE ENTRY $150 PER VISA;

6 MONTH MULTIPLE ENTRY $200 PER VISA;

1 YEAR MULTIPLE ENTRY $240 PER VISA.

NORMAL PROCESSING TIME: 3-5 WORKING DAYS AFTER RECEIVING COMPLETE APPLICATION.

EXPEDITED FEE: $30 EACH VISA, PROCESSING TIME: 24 HOURS FOR SINGLE ENTRY VISA, 2 WORKING DAYS FOR MULTIPLE ENTRIES 90 DAYS.

* SINGLE ENTRY: IF YOU ENTER VIETNAM ONE TIME.

MULTIPLE ENTRIES:  YOU ENTER VIETNAM MORE THAN ONE TIME (YOU ENTER VIETNAM, GO TO ANOTHER NEIGHBOURING COUNTRY AND GO BACK TO VIETNAM) OR CRUISE MAKES SEVERAL STOPS IN VIETNAM.

* AT PRESENT, THE EMBASSY OF VIETNAM CAN ARRANGE AN APPROVAL FOR A VISA GOOD FOR 3 MONTHS, MULTIPLE ENTRIES AS MAXIMUM. APPLICANT SHOULD SEND WITH THE APPLICATION A COPY OF RETURN TICKET.

A VISA GOOD FOR MORE THAN 3 MONTHS CAN ONLY BE ISSUED TO ANY APPLICANT WHO HAS OBTAINED A WORK PERMIT AND A VISA APPROVAL ALREADY.

WHAT TO SUBMIT?

- PASSPORT (YOU CAN SEND A COPY OF YOUR PASSPORT AND ASK FOR A LOOSE-LEAF VISA with 02 photos. For loose leaf visa, the immigration department will collect it back AND IF YOU LOOSE THE VISA, YOU NEED TO REAPPLY FOR A NEW VISA AND HAVE TO PAY AGAIN FOR FULL FEE).  THE IMMIGRATION OFFICER WILL NOT COLLECT MULTIPLE ENTRY LOOSE LEAF VISA (IF THEY ARE TO COLLECT, PLEASE ASK THE OFFICER TO RETURN).

- APPLICATION FORM (TO BE FILLED ONLINE AT http://vietnamembassy-usa.org/vi/lanhsu/thi-thuc-visa-0) OR PDF FORM FROM http://vietnamembassy-usa.org/sites/def … hithuc.pdf IF YOU APPLY FOR 3 MONTH MULTIPLE ENTRY VISA, YOU NEED TO SEND COPY OF YOUR AIR RETURN TICKET (RESERVATION OR ITINERARY).

- FEE (1 MONEY ORDERS OR CASHIER CHECK PER APPLICATION PACKAGE), PAYABLE TO "EMBASSY OF VIETNAM" OR CREDIT/DEBIT CARD IF APPLYING IN PERSON AT THE EMBASSY.  APPLICANTS APPLYING TOGETHER MAY SUBMIT THE FEE IN ONE MONEY ORDER.

- A SELF-ADDRESSED POSTAGE-PAID RETURN ENVELOPE IF YOU WANT TO HAVE YOUR VISA MAILED. FOR THE SAFETY OF YOUR PASSPORT(S), PLEASE USE ONLY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING MAILING SERVICES WHICH PROVIDE TRACKING NUMBERS: OR US EXPRESS MAIL OR CERTIFIED MAIL WITH FULL LABEL OR FEDEX/UPS. PLEASE DO NOT USE OTHER MAILING SERVICES. APPLICANTS APPLYING TOGETHER MAY PROVIDE ONE ENVELOPE FOR VISAS TO BE RETURNED TO THE SAME ADDRESS.

- COPY OF GREEN CARD OR RESIDENT CARD FOR NON-AMERICAN PASSPORT HOLDERS (IF POSSESSED)

WHERE TO SUBMIT?

CONSULAR SECTION

EMBASSY OF VIETNAM

1233 20TH STREET, NW

SUITE 400

WASHINGTON, DC 20036

REGARDS.

So given the above. /\

I think I can just go here
http://visa.mofa.gov.vn/_layouts/regist … nForm.aspx

Fill out the online form, and wait for the approval to show up in my email.

I don't understand all the chatter I read about using a "Visa Service" for an "Approval Letter".  Seems to me you just use the viet govt. online form and they will send you the approval letter in your email. Maybe I am missing something?

Is there a point to the visa service providers just to get a simple 3 month tourist visa that I am missing?

Thanks,
Zep

Zep, I have been told on two occasions now, when checking in at airports  to fly to Saigon from elsewhere, that the airline wont let me fly as I don't have a return ticket. Apparently if you don't get issued a visa on arrival, the airline has the responsibility of returning you to where you came from, if you don't have either a return or an onward flight.

In my case I was able to point to my 5 year temporary residence permit and they allowed me on the flight.

Be very careful if using a visa service. Some of them are OK and very useful if you don't want to spend ages queuing on arrival. But some of them are a real rip off.

As far as the return ticket demand is concerned this is NOT a regulation from the country in order to fly. It is to protect the arirline whose responsibility it is if you are denied entry when you arrive at the destination. There are two ways to avoid this if you have a single ticket.

1 You explain that you will leave the country by bus, plane to a different destination, boat or train and NOT return to the point of origin.

2. If they still refuse you to board the flight you may offer to sign a waiver stating that you will accept the respnsibility to purchase a one way ticket out of the country if you are denied entry. For that you can choose a budget airline to Bankgok, Cambodia, Singapore etc. which is likely to be a lot cheaper than an original return ticket open ended.

If you end up signing the waiver when you arrive here in Vietnam you are unlikely to be asked but if you are you tell them that you will go from HCMC to Phnom Penh by bus - cost US$ 10. If you actually do go from HCMC to Phnom Penh you would get a visa for Cambodia at the border (See Cambodia forum) and get a visa in the Vietnames Embassy in Phnom Penh to return to Vietnam. No further questions asked about return tickets!!!!!

Zepo,

The Embassy mentioned a "1 YEAR MULTIPLE ENTRY $240 PER VISA".

Has anyone living here in HCMC ever been issued that type of visa ? I have never seen or heard of one.

BuddyM,

I think the 1 year is for Business Visa.

Zep

I've been to Vietnam at least 10 times, twice a year and have never been asked for a return ticket.

But I assume they do ask sometimes because one time I used a travel agency in Canada for a 1-way ticket to Vietnam. On the iternary was a pseudo return flight.

So I guess this having a return ticket has caused issues for the travel agency's clients.

Do you think it is appropriate that I have a teaching position offered to me and they said to  book my flight and get the 3 month visa ( with invitation from employer) then I will get business Visa after 3 months ? Is that suspicious ? I would like to book a one way flight .

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