All visitors entering Laos must possess valid passports valid for at least six months from the date of entry. On entering Laos visitors must ensure they receive an entry stamp in their passport, as fines for not having one are expensive. The information in period of 2016-2017, Please note that it could be changed, please check Laos Embassy in your country.
- An application form filled and signed by the applicant.
- Two recent photographs.
- Passport must have at least six months remaining validity.
Types of Visas
• Maximum 5 days for stay (in Vientiane only).
• Proof of an entry visa and air ticket to the third country.
• Fifteen days (non-extendable).
• Visa processing should be made through an eligible tour company which has a contract with a tour company in the Lao PDR or directly through the Laos Embassy or Consulate in many countries such as France, Russia, Sweden, USA, Poland, Germany, Cuba, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, The Philippines, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, India, Australia and USA.
• One month for stay (can be extended for two additional months).
• Visa request can be processed either through a guarantor in Laos or the Laos Embassy
• Visa authorization is arranged by sponsor in Laos and the Embassy cannot process visas until it receives authorization or approval from the authorities concerned in Laos.
• One month for stay (can be extended until completion of your business term).
• Available only from the Consulate Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Laos PDR.
Validity of Visas
- All types of visas are issued for one entry and must be used within two months of issue date.
Notification on Immigration
Comprises checkpoints which do not offer visa-on-arrival facilities. These checkpoints allow entry for Laos citizens, foreign residents, and foreign visitors who hold passports with visas already issued by the MFA, an Embassy or a Consulate General of the Laos PDR abroad. The border checkpoints falling under this category are:
- Wattay International Airport in Vientiane Capital.
- Luang Prabang International Airport in Luang Prabang Province.
- Pakse Internatioanl Airport in Champasack Province.
- Savannakhet International Airport in Savannakhet Province.
- Attapue International Airport in Attapue Province.
Mohan – Botene , Yunnan to Luang Namtha Province.
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge IV, Chiangkhong – Houixay, Chiang Rai to Bokeo Province.
Nakaxeng – Kaenthao, Loei to Sayabouly Province.
Houai Kon – Nam Ngeun, Nan to Sayabouly Province
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge I, Nongkhay-Vientiane Capital.
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge II, Moukdahan-Savannakhet Province.
Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge III, Nakorn Phanom-Khammouane Province.
Chongmek – Vangtao, Ubol Ratchathani to Champasack Province.
Nameo – Banleui, Thanh Hoa to Huaphanh Province.
Namkan – Namkan, Nge An to Xieng Khouang Province.
Keoneua – Nampao (Lak Sao), Ha tinh to Bolikhamxay Province.
Laobao – Dansavanh, Quang tri to Savannakhet Province.
Dong Calor – Veun Kham, Cambodia to Champasack Province.
Travellers holding passports from the following countries, however, are not at this time eligible for Laos Visas-on-Arrival : Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Burundi, Cameroon, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Jordan, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya), Mozambique, Nauru, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Syria (Syrian Arab Republic), Swaziland, Tonga, Turkey, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
According to notice No. 1232 issued on 1 October 2009, by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lao PDR, nationals on the list above must obtain their visas at Lao Embassies or Lao Consulates abroad before entering Laos. However, there is an exception for those nationals who are an official visits and holding a guarantee from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lao PDR.
Additional Categories of Visas
(An Explanatory Note to Regulation No. 044/ FA.O of 5 January 1998 on Immigration and Stay of Foreign Citizens in Laos PDR).
+ Categories of Visas
1. Diplomatic visas (A1) Diplomatic visas are issued to diplomats, consular officers, heads of the United Nations Agencies and other International Organizations, and their dependents (spouse and children) holding diplomatic passports.
2. Official visas (A2) Official visas are issued to the Staff members of Diplomatic Missions, Consulates, United Nations Agencies and other International Agencies and their dependents (spouse and children) holding official passports.
3. Courtesy visas (B1) Courtesy vias are issued to foreign experts and their dependents holding diplomatic, official and normal passports performing assignments under bilateral cooperation or grant assistance projects for the Government of Lao PDR.
4. Business visas (B2) Business visas are issued to foreign experts and their performing assignments under projects provided by loan agreements and as provided by employment contracts or project wards, to experts and volunteers of Non-Governmental Agencies, experts in education and medical sciences generating income for an agency, staff members of Diplomatic Missions, General Consulates, the United Nations Agencies and other international organizations holding normal passports from the countries or from third countries, as well as foreign businesspersons.
5. Visit visas (B3) Visit visas are issued to foreign citizens holding normal passports and intending to visit relatives working in the Laos PDR.
+ Visa Status
1. Diplomatic visas (A1) and official visas (A2) are exempted from visa fees. Multiple entry visas may be obtained for a period of one year and may be renewed each year until the assignment’s completion.
2. Courtesy visas (B1) are exempted from visas fees. Multiple entry visas may be obtained for a period of six months and may brenewed every six months until the assignment’s completion.
3. Business visas (B2) are subject to the payment of mandatory visa and service fees. Multiple entry visas may be obtained for a period of six (6) months and may be renewed every six (6) months until completion of assignments.
4. Visit visas (B3) are subject to the payment of visa and service upon each travel in destination to the Laos PDR. B3 category visas does not entitle its holder to work or apply for multiple entry visas.
+ Visa and Identity Card Application Procedures
1. Diplomats, Consuls, Heads of International Agencies and their dependents (spouses and children) holding diplomatic or official passports and whose assignments in the Lao PDR, which performance would exceed thirty (30) days, have been approved, will be required to apply for visas from Embassies or General Consulates of the Lao PDR according to procedures provided under bilateral agreements. Upon their entry to the Lao PDR, the relevant foreign agency shall apply for identity cards and multiple entry visas from the Protocol Department and the Department of Consular Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs respectively.
2. Foreign experts of different categories and volunteers, together with their dependents, holding official or normal passports whose assignments in the Laos PDR would exceed thirty (30) days, have been approved, are required to obtain visas from Embassies or General Consulates of the Laos PDR. Upon their entry, the international organization or Lao line agency concerned shall apply for identity cards and multiple entry visas from the relevant departments.
3. Diplomats, staff members of Consulates and International Agencies, foreign experts and volunteers entering the Lao PDR under visit visas (B3) without going through the requisite procedures will not benefit from facilities in performing their assignments. In order to perform their assignments, they will be required to leave the territory of the Lao PDR for the purpose of obtaining the required visa categories from Embassies or General Consulates of the Lao PDR before re- entering the country.
4. Diplomats, staff members of Consulates and International Agencies, foreign experts and volunteers based abroad and whose assignments, which performance would require a timeframe not exceeding thirty (30) days, have been approved, may obtain a fifteen (15) day visa upon arrival to Wattay International Airport of the Friendship Bridge in Vientiane Municipality, as well as at the Luang Prabang International Airport.
5. Diplomats, consular officers, staff members of the International Agencies, foreign experts and volunteers performing assignments in the Lao PDR for a period not exceeding thirty (30) days. Such period of time may be extended twice under B3 visas.
6. Diplomatic missions, General Consulates, International Agencies and non-governmental organizations to the Lao PDR will not be authorized to recruit foreign experts or volunteers who have completed their assignments under a project and seeking further employment under other projects at will without due process in line with the procedures or regulations outlined by the Laos authorities.
Visa in Advance of Travel
- All applicants wishing to travel to the Lao PDR on the above mentioned purposes can obtain a visa in advance of your arrival.
(Any travellers may also obtain visas from Lao Embassies and Consulates abroad in advance of arrival. This can be done in several ways hrough a tour company recognized by the Lao PDR, or directly through Lao Embassies or Consulates).
- For more information, please contact the Lao Embassy from 8:00-12:00/13:00-16:00, Monday to Friday.
For those wishing to stay longer, it is possible to extend the visa at the Immigration Office in Vientiane and through travel agencies.
The extension will cost US $2 per day provided you apply before the expiry date. However, if you leave it until your visa expires you will be fined US $10 for each day you overstayed.
If you are in Vientiane, Laos Visa extension can be done at the Immigration Office behind the Joint Development Bank (JDB) on Lane Xang Avenue, opposite the Morning Market. The office is open Monday-Friday, from 8:00am-4:00pm (closed 12:00 to 13:00 at lunchtime). The office is closed for applications on Friday afternoon.
Requirements for Extension
One passport type photo
Service fee of US$3
Application fee of 3,000 kip per person
Visa extension fee : $2 per day if you have valid visa, $10 per day if your visa is already expired (overstayed days)
Get a travel agent or specialist provider to do your Laos visa extension for you.
Most travel agents can arrange a Laos visa extension for you with a small overhead fee. This varies between providers, so shop around for the best deal.
The process is straight forward, just fill out the application form then submit together with your passport and pay the fees. In normal circumstances your visa is usually ready the same day. If you only plan to stay for a few more days this option could work out best.
If you are in Vientiane it is very easy to simply get a new Visa-on-Arrival: you can take a public bus (around 10,000 kip) to the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge, complete the immigration exit procedures on the Lao side; the take the shuttle bus (5,000 kip) to the Thai immigration point and enter Thailand. When you’re ready to come back into Laos, you simply need to cross the road to Thai immigration to exit the country. Once again, get the shuttle bus and then arrive at the Lao side, where you can apply for a Laos Visa on Arrival.
Your passport must have at least 6 months of remaining validity and a blank page for a visa stamp and don’t forget to take enough cash (US dollars) for the visa fee and two passport sized photos.
Please visit the National Tourism Office for more details.