Vietnam News

Teething troubles : Unwieldy online process forces visa seekers to depend on agents

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Many foreigners and international tour operators complain that difficulties with Vietnam’s online visa issuance process force them to go to brokers despite the extra costs involved.

Robert Wieczorek of Poland told VnExpress International he had waited for a long time for the multiple-entry e-visa valid for three months to be introduced, but realized soon how complicated and long the application form is, and decided to use a visa brokerage which cost him an extra US$20.

“I got to the new website, which was not easy by the way because it is in Vietnamese and it is difficult to find where to change the language. I then got a long and very complicated form. I waited for long for the OTP to come to my email.

“After a few minutes I decided to find some agent to get it for me and save time. For just $20 I save a lot of time and stress.”

Many other foreigners have also complained that the visa website is too complicated and often confusing.

It still shows the e-visa to be only valid for 30 days and one entry, and nationals of only 80 countries eligible for it while the new law that took effect from Aug. 15 allows citizens of all countries to apply for it.

Martin Koerner, head of the tourism working group at the Vietnam Business Forum, said he has received negative feedback from international partners applying for the visa.

Some international operators offering inbound tourism to Vietnam such as Make Your Asia and DER Touristik complained that the OTP sometimes does not come even after five tries and applicants are stuck for long after clicking on Request OTP, he said.

“Many of our international partners are confused and use agents.”

An employee at a visa services company in Hanoi said its fee for obtaining a multiple-entry 90-day visa is $95.

On Facebook groups for foreigners, many asked to find travel agents or visa brokerage services to help them proceed their e-visa application.

Visitors seeking to apply themselves can upload their application on the Immigration Department portal at or the Ministry of Public Security’s

The fees are $25 for a single-entry visa and $50 for multiple entry.

By Hoang Phong – – August 23, 2023

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