by Female Abroad

As per the Canadian government, Canadians should obtain your visa prior to arrival. From my experience, it is a lot more convenient to arrive with it then having to wait in a line for hours to pay a a fee and then wait for a few more hours to another line to get it. When I landed at 1am, it was a 3 hour wait to get the Visa and then you had to join the 2 hour line to get through customs. I had my visa so I just had to go through customs.

For more info and up to date info from the Canadian government, visit their website here.

One of my colleagues went and got a physical visa in his passport from the Vietnam Embassy with a month prior to their trip. I went the e-visa route. He paid C$ 150 and received his passport back the day before his trip, I paid U$ 25 and got my visa two weeks prior to my departure.

I highly recommend the e-visa route as it was super simple. The link the Canadian government recommends is on the website above but at time of writing, the direct website to the Immigration Department of Vietnam can be found here. This is the route I took so the website is legit.

At the site:

  1. click the photo that says "e-Visa, Electronic Visa"
  2. on the next page click "for Foreigners"
  3. read the instructions and click "Confirmation of reading carefully instructions and having completed application"
  4. Next page is where you fill out all of your information, some things to note:
    1. for the "Portrait Photography" all I did was take a picture of my passport and cropped it so just the photo of my face showed. If you upload an image that is too large then it will tell you, you'll have to delete it, resize the image, and then reupload
    2. for the "Passport data page image" you upload a full photo of the passport page that has your information & photo
    3. "Intended length of stay in Viet Nam" is the Number of days you'll be in the country (if you are flying from Canada, keep in mind the date change)
    4. "Intended date of entry" this is when you will enter Vietnam
    5. "Intended temporary residential address in Viet Nam" is the address of your accommodation (i.e. hotel, friend/family house, Air Bnb, etc)
    6. "Grant Evisa valid from" is the date that you will arrive in the country (if you are flying from Canada, keep in mind the date change)
      1. make sure this matches your "Intended date of entry"
    7. "Allowed to entry through checkpoint" is where you will be entering the country from (i.e. which airport, cruise port, or land boarder you will be arriving into the country via)
    8. "to" is the date that you are leaving the country
      1. make sure that your valid from and to dates equal the "intended length of stay in Viet Nam" (ex. if you wrote 30 days "intended length of stay" box but you have "grant eVisa" / "intended date of entry" as Aug 1 and "to" as Aug 31, your visa request would be denied as Aug 1 to 31 is 31 days.
    9. "exit through checkpoint" is the airport, cruise port, or land boarder you will be leaving from
  5. Read everything and double check it is all spelt & dated correctly
    1. If there are things like spelling or date errors after the visa has been issued then you will have to contact the embassy to have it corrected which can be costly and take a lot of time / effort so it is easier just not to mess up the first time!
  6. tick "I assure that I have truthfully declared all relevant details
  7. complete captcha
  8. click "review application form"

If all the passport #, country, and nationality matches then you can review the application, pay for the U$ 25 fee on credit card, and then they'll email you a reference code so you can log in and check you application status. If your information does not exist then you will get an error similar to "This application has been existed, please review _________".

For there, they say it will take 3 business days to issue your visa. Mine took 5 days, I doubt they even looked at my application just that it was over due and issued it. When I was in country, I spoke with someone who worked in the passport office and they said they were really far behind so it was very difficult to meet the 3 day timeline and there was a very good chance they just approved it without looking.

Once the visa is approved, even though it is an electronic visa, you will need to print off 3 copies. One copy will be taken from you upon arrival, one copy will be taken upon departure, and the third copy is in case one copy gets damaged or lost. The visa does state right on it that you can staple it into your passport, do not do this, they just rip it out and then you have a damaged page on your visa.