E-visa facility for Vietnam in the pipeline

An electronic tourist visa facility will be made available to select nationalities visiting Vietnam from February 1 next year as part of a two-year trial scheme, the latest announcement in a series of visa relaxation initiatives to facilitate travel into the country.

Under the scheme, visitors can apply for 30-day single entry visas through a website and have them issued by the immigration authority within about three days, according to local media reports.

Vietnam’s tourism authorities are certain that such improvements in visa policy will make entry into the country much easier and boost the destination’s competitiveness.

“We try our best to make the (visa application) process more convenient. Many travellers today, including those from Singapore, value convenience and (time-savings) instead of just cash savings,” said Ha Van Sieu, vice chairman of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, at a roadshow in Singapore last Friday.

The list of nationalities eligible for the new e-visa facility has not been disclosed.

Other recent developments include the extension of temporary visa exemption for citizens of the UK, France, Italy, Spain and Germany till June 30, 2017.

Currently, Vietnam’s visa-exempt countries include Japan, South Korea, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Russia and ASEAN countries.