Tag Archives: visa

Laos Launches Online eVisa Service

Laos Officially Launches eVisa for tourists

Lao has launched its long-awaited electronic tourist visa (eVisa) service, which will allow foreigners to apply for a visa online prior to arriving in the country.

Laos To Launch Online eVisa Service in July

Laos to Launch Electronic eVisa Service

Laos will begin offering electronic tourist visa (eVisa) applications in July this year, allowing visitors to apply for a visa online prior to arriving in the country.

The official website for the e-visa application process is https://laoevisa.gov.la

The eVisa website will be jointly managed by the Lao Consular Affairs Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Public Security. Tourist visas valid for 30 days will be the first types of visas offered by the site, with other types of visas to be added at a later date.

The application process involves three simple steps, including the provision of documents and payment of an online fee, after which users can download an official eVisa approval letter.

Payments may be made with VISA or Mastercard credit card systems.

Special eVisa priority lanes will be available at seven ports:

Wattay International Airport
Luang Prabang International Airport
Pakse International Airport
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge I
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge II
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge IV
Boten International Checkpoint

According to the website, the eVisa processing time will be up to three working days, and eVisa applications will include an extra 15 USD charge on top of the ordinary visa fee.

The eVisa system has been developed by the Lao government to boost efficiency in visa processing and as a more convenient way for tourists to apply for tourist visas.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, visa on arrival services and visa applications at Lao embassies abroad will still be available for the time being.

Travel Plans? Laos Set to Provide eVisa From June 2019

Laos EVisa Program Planned for June Implementation

Laos has announced it will begin offering electronic visas (eVisa) to foreign tourists and travelers from June this year.

Establishment of the eVisa program will commence in mid-2019, according to a Lao Ministry of Foreign Affairs notice issued earlier this month dated March 11.

Laos' eVisa plans announced in note issued via Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Laos’ eVisa plans announced in note issued via Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The move comes as the government takes steps to modernize and ensure visa procedures are faster and more convenient for tourist visa applicants, according to the notice.

It is also another means by which the government hopes to attract more tourism to the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs consular office is working with all other ministries and departments to ensure the comprehensive and timely development of the eVisa program.

The eVisa program, it is hoped, will allow foreign visitors greater access to information and more convenience in visa processing, and will assist in making the country more widely known among tourists.

It comes as policymakers and the private sector seek to capitalize on the benefits of improved connectivity and widen the range of offerings to attract valuable tourism and travel-related income and investment.

© The Laotian Times

 

Thailand Visa Applicants Beware: Fortnight Wait As Consulate Appointment Bookings Bank Up in VTE

Thailand Visas

Foreign nationals seeking visas to ever-popular Thailand for residence or travel can expect waits of up to two weeks for appointments for visa application or renewal via the country’s consulate in Vientiane, Laos.

Waits of up to two weeks are being noted for appointments for visas to Thailand through the consulate appointment system at https://thaivisavientiane.com/.

Foreign nationals applying for either a Thailand’s tourist, non-immigrant or transit visa first need to schedule an online appointment before submitting the visa application in person.

Appointment wait times have reportedly blown out since the introduction of the online booking system whose February 1 launch was reported in The Laotian Times.

The British Business Group in Vientiane sent a missive advising members of the current status of application appointments.

The topic is also trending on The Nation’s Thai Visa Forum.

Vientiane is a popular destination for visa applicants to the Kingdom.

Queue No More: Vientiane’s Thai Consulate Visa Appointment Applications Go Online

Thailand Visas

Visa applications to Thailand from Laos via Vientiane are set to get a shakeup with the introduction of an online appointment system, Thailand’s Embassy has confirmed.

Long queues into the Thai consulate in Vientiane are set to become a thing of the past, with all appointments to be made online and walk-ins refused.

Information on the system is set to be released on embassy channels January 28, and come into effect on February 1.

Apart from saving time, money and streamlining operations in a general sense, the move is set to make the biggest difference in summer, when rising temperatures have occasionally been known to fray tempers and sanity among the queuing applicants of multiple nationalities, many of whom are frequent travelers to or foreign residents of Thailand on “visa runs”, as well as those persons based in Laos seeking visas permitting more than two trips per year overland to the near neighbor via Friendship Bridge.

Thai Visas

For those folk wistfully nostalgic about their time spent waiting for a visa appointment in the consulate queue, be sure to make it down in this splendid weather for old times sake.

Thailand May Reinstate Land Border Entry for Expats in Neighboring Countries

Thailand Visas

Could the cross-border retail and recreation-related dreams of foreign expatriates, non-diplomats and other non-Lao-non-ASEAN-passport-holding residents in Laos be about to come true across the Mekong in Thailand once again visa-free?

Laos’ near neighbour is reportedly considering removing the restrictions on land border entry affecting foreign expatriates in neighbouring countries including Laos for an initial period of two months, both The Nation and Bangkok Post reported on November 14.

Bangkok Post's List of Planned Changes includes a proposed lift on restrictions affecting expatriate residents of Laos.

Bangkok Post’s List of Planned Changes includes a proposed lift on restrictions on land border entry, potentially improving connectivity for expatriate residents of Laos.

The move would loosen restrictions that have been in place since December 31, 2016 as reported by Laotian Times.

The reported move from the country’s cabinet Tuesday comes amid efforts by Thailand’s policymakers to attract more visitor arrivals.

Other proposed measures also include double-entry visas for six months and special discounts at Thai malls under the “Amazing Thailand Grand Sale: Passport Privileges” campaign that continues from November 15 to January 15, 2019.

Since the start of 2017, limits on land border entry have affected foreign non-ASEAN passport holding expatriates (including those eligible to a visa-waiver), restricting them to just two single visa-free entries on arrival via the country’s land border points per year.

It remains to be seen whether the mooted liberalization will come in the form of carving out an exemption for foreign expatriates or result in the removal of the two-times-per-year land border entry restriction entirely.

Either way, a loosening on the restriction is likely to be welcome news, particularly to those for whom visa application processes and fees have proved onerous enough to prevent them from regularly visiting otherwise accessible destinations located on the far side of mighty Mekong.

Thai Visas

Foreigners Married to Lao Citizens Now Entitled to Spouse Visa

Foreigner Spouse Marriage Visa

The Government of Laos will now be issuing foreign spouse visas to foreigners who hold a valid Lao certificate of marriage with a Lao citizen.

Until now, the foreign spouses of Lao citizens received no special privileges or entitlements after completing the lengthy marriage process. Those who held a valid Lao certificate of marriage could remain in Laos by way of a business visa, investment visa, or tourist visa only.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced a new type of visa, the SP-B3, would be issued from 1 August 2018. After this policy change, the government has quietly begun issuing a new type of visa upon request to those holding a licensed and registered marriage certificate.

 

RDK Group
RDK Group can now assist with your application for a SP-B3 Spouse Visa!

 

 
The Application Process

The application process for this visa contains a number of steps but is not overly complicated. This is divided into three parts.

Part 1:  Spouse Visa

Documents Required:

  1. A copy of the marriage certificate (1 copy)
  2. Letter of Proposal – can be obtained at the Consular Office, MOFA (1 copy)
  3. A copy of the family book or ID card of the Lao citizen (1 copy)
  4. A certificate of residence signed and sealed by the village authorities (1 copy)
  5. A copy of the passport of the foreign spouse (1 copy)

 

Procedures:

The documents listed above must be brought to the Consular Affairs Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), where officers will issue visa authorization. The authorization document must be brought to the border checkpoint specified in the letter of proposal (listed above). The fee for this is 30 USD.

 

Part 2: Stay Permit

 The documents required are:

 Documents Required:

  1. Letter of Proposal or Request to Register for a Stay Permit (the MOFA consular office will assist with this).
  2. Certificate of Residence signed and sealed by the village authorities (1 copy).
  3. A copy of the family book or ID card of the Lao citizen (1 copy).
  4. A copy of the passport of the foreign spouse (1 copy)
  5. A copy of the spouse visa (SP-B3) (1 copy)
  6. A copy of the Certificate of Marriage (1 copy)
  7. Passport photos at 3×4 size (3 photos)

 

Procedures:

The documents listed above must be brought to the Office of Foreigner Administration for processing.  The fee for the Stay Permit is 1,320,000 kip. 

 

Part 3: 1 Year Visa

After the officials have issued the Stay Permit, it will be necessary to have the visa converted to a 1 year visa.

The documents required are:

Documents Required:

  1. A copy of the marriage certificate (1 copy)
  2. A letter of proposal (1 copy)
  3. A copy of the family book or ID card of the Lao citizen (1 copy).
  4. Certificate of Residence signed and sealed by the village authorities (1 copy).
  5. A copy of the passport of the foreign spouse (1 copy)

 

Procedures:
The documents listed above must be brought to the Consular Affairs Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs for processing. The fee for this is 1,320,000 kip.

 

Working Under a Spouse Visa

Those holding a spouse visa are entitled to work in the Lao PDR, and the application process is similar to that of an LA-B2 visa.  A company must sponsor an individual residing in Laos under the spouse (SP-B3) visa, in which case the Ministry of Labor will issue a work permit.

 

Foreign Marriage Certificates

The spouse visa is also available to spouses of Lao citizens who have registered their marriage overseas. In order to apply, the foreign marriage certificate must be authorized at the Treaties and Law Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

 

 This article supplied by RDK GROUP.

 

RDK Visa Service

US to Cease Issuing Visas to Laos Citizens Following Deportation Row

US Restriction on Laos Visas

The Trump administration has ordered suspension of the issuance of visas to certain citizens of Laos after the country refused to take back its persons deported from the United States.

The US Department of Homeland Security made the announcement on Tuesday afternoon, saying it had ordered the State Department to sanction visas for Laos and Myanmar because the two countries “have denied or unreasonably delayed accepting their nationals ordered removed.”

US officials claim they had made diplomatic communications at the highest level of government in Laos before resorting to the heavy penalties.

US consular officials in Vientiane were ordered to impose visa restrictions on certain applicants.

A statement at the Department of Homeland Security website reads, “as of July 9, 2018, the US Embassy in Vientiane, Laos, has discontinued the issuance of all B1, B2, and B1/B2 nonimmigrant visas for current officials at the Director General level and above from the Lao Ministry of Public Security (MPS) as well as their immediate families; and all A3 and G5 nonimmigrant visas to individuals employed by Lao government officials, with limited exceptions.”

According to US law, countries that agree to accept back citizens must issue travel documents for deportees before the US can deport them. In the case of Laos, the government allegedly refused or delayed the supply of these documents.

As of July, nine countries including Laos are being considered uncooperative. Sanctions still apply to Cambodia and Myanmar as well.

Source: DHS, Washing Examiner