Foreign travelers in Hanoi

The Government Office has released a notice about the unilateral visa waiver for citizens of other countries and new policies in the management of entry, exit, transit and residence of foreigners in Vietnam.

The Ministry of Public Security (MPS) has been asked to join forces with the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) and relevant agencies to urgently deploy procedures and complete documents to propose policies in the field of management of entry, exit, transit and residence of foreigners in Vietnam in accordance with current laws.

The ministries must report to the government so that the government can submit to the National Assembly and consider adding the issue into the National Assembly’s general resolution at the fifth session, slated for May 2023. There are three major contents.

First, extending the visa time limit from no more than 30 days to no more than three months and the validity of one or more times.

Second, granting electronic visas to citizens of all countries and territories.

Third, extending the time limit for granting certificates for temporary residence at border gates to immigrants under the visa waiver mode from 15 days to 45 days.

Meanwhile, MPS is collecting opinions about the draft of the law on amending and supplementing some of the articles of the Law on Foreigners' Entry into, Exit from, Transit through, and Residence in Vietnam.

The ministry proposes extending the duration of electronic visas to be granted to foreigners entering Vietnam for two more months and valid once or multiple times. 

The government will determine the list of countries and territories whose citizens can be granted e-visas and the international border gates through which foreigners can enter and exit with e-visas.

In the draft, MPS suggests extending the time of temporary stay for citizens of the countries enjoying Vietnam’s unilateral visa waiver policy from 15 days to 30 days. The validity will remain 3 months.

At the national tourism conference 2023, some ministries and branches proposed extending the time of Vietnam’s unilateral visa waiver to attract foreign travelers. Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh said that the number of countries to enjoy visa waiver will increase, the stay time will be prolonged at reasonable costs and the e-visa policy will be expanded.

Vietnam reopened its tourism very early, in March 2022, but the number of foreign travelers to Vietnam remained modest in 2022, just 3.6 million. Analysts said that one of the reasons was the regulated short time of stay in Vietnam.

Tran Thuong