Thai Embassy Vientiane Visa Run
One of the most important things to do if you plan on staying in Thailand for longer than a standard vacation period then you need to get used to going on visa runs. Depending on what country your passport is can dictate how easy it is for you to come and go to other countries for a renewed travel stamp on arrival. If you’re looking to kick it in Bangkok or on a beach somewhere for a while then it’s advisable to learn about going on visa runs to neighboring countries like Malaysia, Cambodia, Myanmar or the Thai Embassy Vientiane in Laos.
Some of these countries more practical depending on your location. For example, if you’re in Chiang Mai then you will likely go on a run to Myanmar, Krabi I would recommend Malaysia, and for Bangkok, the best options are either Cambodia or Laos. It’s super important that you don’t overstay and get negative stamps in your passport but fortunately, there are many companies that offer paid trips for this specific service.
Before you even buy your flight or bus ticket you will need to make an appointment with the Royal Thai Embassy in Vientiane or you won’t be served. You can make an appointment online 2-4 weeks in advance here.
Going on a Visa Run to Laos
I typically get my new visa stamps by traveling to a new country every month by air, which is also more acceptable to immigration than multiple entries by land. It’s recommended and even allegedly limited to 2 entries by land a year but flights are basically “unlimited”.
If you don’t want to have to travel as much as I like to then you may want to consider jumping on a normal visa by visiting one of the Royal Thai Embassies in neighboring countries. This process typically only takes 2 days, day 1 being when you show up for your appointment and day 2 is typically when you can pick it up. For this particular blog post, I will be covering how I did my Visa run to the Thai Embassy Vientiane.
Getting to Laos for a Visa Run:
If you’re really trying to save money and have the time then take the bus from Bangkok North to the border at Nongkhai for like 800-1200 baht. Then the bus across the Thai Laos friendship bridge is only maybe 40 baht. After that, you can get yourself to Vientiane for a couple of hundred Kipp, but you can also spend Thai baht pretty much everywhere in Laos.
By Air (How I arrived)
I ended up booking two tickets from Bangkok to Vientiane for me and my girlfriend for only 3,200 baht, which is basically like $100 USD. Once we arrived, I had to pay $45 USD for Visa on Arrival. After you get through immigration you can either take a taxi for around $7 or 55,ooo Kipp or the super convenient Airport Bus that comes every 40 minutes and only costs maybe 60 baht or 15,000 Kipp. You can read more about Wattay Airport transportation services here.
Picking up my passport was by Tuk Tuk and they usually try to get 50,000 Kipp out of you, even for only like 2km, but I found you can typically get the same distance for around 20-30,000 depending on the driver and also the size of their ride. After picking up my passport, we took a taxi from the Thai embassy to the bridge to cross back into Thailand for only 100 baht per person! We then proceeded to take the bus as described above for only 30 baht then a bus from Kohn Kaen for only 800 baht.
Types of Tourist Visa and Validity
One of the beauties of going out on one of these visa runs is you can get a visa for up to 90 days, versus the 30 visa on arrival stamp the typical tourist needs. If you plan on sticking around in the region for a while, then planning out your passport is very important.
1. Single-Entry Tourist Visa is valid for entering Thailand once within 3 months from the date of application. The period of stay is 60 days maximum.
2. Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa is valid for entering Thailand within 6 months from the date of application. The period of stay is 60 days maximum per stay. The Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa holder may enter Thailand again as long as the visa is still valid. Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa will only be granted to Lao nationals or those with proof of permanent residence in Laos.
Be aware that you can perform all these services inside the gates of the Royal Thai Embassy according to the prices seen in the above image but there will be people outside trying to solicit services to “help” you. These “services” include making copies, filling out your paperwork and even taking pictures for you as required in the list below but they’ll be trying to charge you up to 5x the price inside the embassy. This business runs practically entirely on the naivety of the average inexperienced traveler, so for those of you reading this is your fair warning.
2. 2 passport-sized photos taken within 6 months
3. A Passport or travel documents (valid for no less than 6 months)
4. A copy of passport or travel documents
5. Evidence of adequate finance
• Single-Entry Tourist Visa: 20,000 baht per person and 40,000 baht per family
• Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa: 200,000 baht per person (6 months of financial statements)
6. Proof of permanent residence (compulsory for Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa applicants)
7. Other documents: as may be requested by Consular officers in addition to the documents above. Please note that Consular officers reserve the right to require additional documents, or an interview with the applicant, as deemed necessary, without prior notice.
1. Single-Entry Tourist Visa: 1,000 baht
2. Multiple-Entry Tourist Visa: 5,000 bahtPROCESSING TIME
2 working days (i.e. apply on Monday morning and pick up on Tuesday afternoon)
Period of Stay
Travelers coming to Thailand with this type of visa will be permitted to stay for a period not exceeding 60 days.
Extension of Stay
If you’re planning on getting a 30-day extension then you need to handle that at a local Immigration Office in Thailand.
Thai Embassy Vientiane Visa
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