Vietnam – Visa Free Entry For Certain Nationalities

What has changed

Beginning on July 1, 2015 Vietnam will offer visa exemptions for single-entry visits of up to fifteen (15) days for visitors from Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and Spain starting July 1, 2015 until June 30, 2016.

Previously, nationals of these countries required pre-approval to enter and get a visa on arrival.

Who is affected?
What to expect

  • Visitors to Vietnam from Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and Spain

Those who qualify for the “Single-entry visits” may only enter Vietnam once within any thirty (30) day period and may stay for fifteen (15) days upon arrival. No pre-approval of entry is required in this circumstance. The traveler must allow thirty (30) days or more from the last exit date from Vietnam before the next entry date. Foreigners who enter Vietnam on a visa waiver cannot extend their stay and must exit the country at the end of the fifteen (15) day period. They should also have a passport that is valid for six (6) months and hold a return or onwards ticket.

The visa exemption already applies for citizens of Denmark, Finland, Japan, South Korea, Belorussia and Sweden until 2019.

Analysis for Business Travelers

The law states that the waiver applies for all kinds of passports and all purposes. As it is written, there is no distinction in the law between tourist and business purposes. However, out of caution, it is recommend that the visa waiver be sparingly used for short term, business meetings only and not for hands-on work.

If the person is intending to secure a work permit, they will still at some point need to enter the country on a business visa sponsored by the Vietnam entity and obtained at an overseas Embassy of Vietnam. This will allow them to convert later to long-term temporary residence cards. Visa waivers cannot be converted.

What you need to do
Planning ahead

  • Given the exemptions last until June 30, 2016 only, it would be good practice, as always, to re-confirm visa requirements for Vietnam ahead of traveling.
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide attorney or representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your clients.

The information above was provided by Emigra Worldwide, our global network partners, and relevant government authorities. The information herein is for general purposes only and not intended as advice for a particular matter. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work.

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