Day-Use Transit Preparation in Vietnam: Guide for Visa Exemption and Immigration Procedures at Airports - DayDreamHub | day use

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Day-Use Transit Preparation in Vietnam: Guide for Visa Exemption and Immigration Procedures at Airports


Facing a long layover at Vietnamese airports and wishing to step out for a bit of sightseeing in Vietnam? The entry procedures can be a hurdle. This article comprehensively introduces procedures related to entering Vietnam, necessary information, conditions for visa exemption, and how to apply for a transit visa.

Procedures and Required Information for Entry into Vietnam

Entry Inspection Flow and Duration

Entry inspections into Vietnam generally take about 20 to 30 minutes. Presenting your passport is mandatory, and if available, submitting documents related to your itinerary is recommended. Be prepared to answer questions about your stay duration and departure date for a smoother process.

Visa Exemption Conditions

To be eligible for a visa exemption to Vietnam, your passport must have more than 6 months of remaining validity, and you must not have been subject to any previous entry bans. If planning a tourist stay of 15 days or less, it’s required that more than 30 days have passed since your last visit (otherwise, presenting a return flight ticket is necessary).

Customs Declaration Items

You need to declare at customs if carrying more than $5,000 in foreign currency, over 15 million VND in local currency, more than 20 packs of cigarettes, over 1.5 liters of alcohol (above 22 degrees) or more than 2 liters (below 22 degrees), or more than 300 grams of gold. The import of firearms, antiques, narcotics, and pornography is prohibited.

Visa Exemption Eligible Countries

Vietnam offers visa exemption benefits to numerous countries. If your country is not eligible, you may need to apply for a transit visa.

Eligible countries include: Chile, Panama, Cambodia, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Brunei, Myanmar, Belarus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Norway, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the UK, Kazakhstan.

What is a Transit Visa?

Foreign nationals transiting through Vietnam and not exempt from a visa require a transit visa. It’s mainly for those planning to stay over 24 hours and wish to leave the airport for sightseeing or those staying within 24 hours but need to temporarily leave the transit area.

Who Doesn’t Need a Transit Visa

You don’t need a transit visa if:

  • You’re receiving a visa exemption,
  • You have a connecting flight within 24 hours without leaving the transit area,
  • You hold a valid passport or international travel document, tickets to your next destination, and a valid visa for that destination country.

How to Apply for a Transit Visa

To obtain a Vietnamese transit visa, you can apply at an embassy, online for an e-Visa, or get a visa upon arrival. Embassy applications should be made at the Vietnamese embassy/consulate in your residing country, with fees varying by country. The e-Visa is available for citizens of 81 countries, requires 3 business days for processing, and costs 25 USD.

e-Visa application link:

Visas on arrival are available only for air travelers who have applied for a pre-approval visa letter online and then obtain a visa stamp at Vietnamese airports.

A “Visa Approval Letter” is a document issued by the Vietnam Immigration Department that allows entry and exit to Vietnam for a specified period. With this approval letter, you can receive your visa upon arrival at any of the three international airports in Vietnam (Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Da Nang).

At the airport, the authorities will check the details of your approval letter based on your passport and travel documents. As long as you have provided accurate information during your application, you will be allowed entry into Vietnam upon arrival with the approval letter.

The Vietnam visa stamp is a stamp that is placed in your passport by the immigration authorities when you enter Vietnam. This stamp indicates the visa type, approval letter, validity period, and number of entries allowed (single or multiple) and requires two passport-sized photos, among other visa details. The visa stamp serves as proof that the visa has been approved, the application is complete, and you can legally enter Vietnam based on that visa.

Visa letter application link:

Tips for Using a Transit Visa

When using a transit visa, it’s crucial to pay attention to the time zone differences between countries and adjust your watch to Vietnamese time to avoid missing your flight. Instead of the immigration gate, use the transit gate, and frequently check your flight’s time and number for any changes at the boarding gate. Keeping your luggage to a minimum and avoiding the loss of baggage is also important. If you have a long transit time, consider preparing snacks as food inside the airport might be more expensive than outside.


This article provided a broad range of information for preparing to enter Vietnam, from visa exemption conditions to applying for a transit visa. Understanding the necessary procedures and precautions is crucial for a smooth short-term entry during transit. Considering the use of day-use hotels is another option. We hope this guide aids in planning your trip to Vietnam. Enjoy a safe and delightful journey in Vietnam.

For day-use hotels in Ho Chi Minh City, visit:

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