Passport & Visa

Passports

To enter Laos, a passport valid for at least six months is required by all nationals referred to in the chart above. Travellers have been refused entry into Laos when holding passports with fewer than six months’ validity.

You may not always be required to show a return ticket if you are travelling overland. However, it is wise to procure an itinerary from a travel agent to avoid problems.

Visas

Nationals referred to in the table above can obtain a 30-day visa on arrival at road and river border crossings and ports of entry into Laos. Bring two passport-size photographs with you for the visa.

You can also apply for visas in advance from embassies.

Multiple-entry visas are only available from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Laos.

Be sure to get an entry stamp on arrival, and an exit stamp upon leaving – double-check the date stamps.

Visa note

Nationals not referred to in the chart are advised to contact the embassy to check visa requirements for Laos.

Types and cost

A visa on arrival costs approximately US$35, depending on your nationality. If you obtain a visa in advance, it costs around US$50, but again this varies according to nationality.

Validity

Visas are usually valid for 30 days. If you obtain a visa in advance from the embassy, it’s generally valid for a 30-day stay within two months of issue.

Application to:

Consulate (or consular section at embassy), or an officially recognised tour operator. You can also obtain visas from the Laos Embassy in Bangkok or from numerous travel agents on the Khao San Road in Bangkok. If you are in the UK you can apply to the Laos Embassy in Paris.

Sufficient funds:

It’s unlikely that you will be asked to provide proof, but just in case bring your last few bank statements, tax returns or salary slips.

Extension of stay

You can extend your 30-day tourist visa up to an additional 60 days for a fee of US$2 per day through the Department of Immigration in Vientiane,. If you overstay you’ll have to pay US$10 a day on exit for every day over.

Entry with children

Adults travelling alone with children should be aware that they may be required to produce documentary evidence of parental responsibility before entering the country. Bring paperwork just in case.

Entry with pets

Laos requires a veterinary certificate for entry.

Embassies and tourist offices

Embassy of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic in the USA

Telephone: (202) 332 6416. Website: http://www.laoembassy.com Opening times: Mon-Fri 0900-1630.