Laos Visa Policy

Familiarize yourself with the Laos visa law and find out if you need a travel authorization for your trip.

Visa Policy for Laos

On this page, travelers from all countries across the world will be able to familiarize themselves with the visa policy of Laos, which outlines the rules and requirements that the Laotian government expects foreign visitors to meet to be able to enter the country.

Visa requirements set by the government of Laos differ depending on the traveler’s nationality, the purpose of the visit, and the expected period of time spent in the country.

The visa law of Laos requires all travelers to have an approved visa to enter the country, as well as a passport valid for at least 6 months. The visa required may be either an electronic visa, a visa on arrival, or an embassy visa.

The electronic visa for Laos (eVisa) is available for around 160 foreign nationalities. It can be obtained before departure by completing an easy online application form.

An approved eVisa is sent by email to the applicant, usually within 3 working days. It allows a short stay for tourism purposes.

There are also under 10 nationalities whose residents are required to apply for a visa on arrival, which can be obtained once in Laos at almost all ports of entry. However, this usually requires involves waiting in long lines at border entry checkpoints to submit an application.

Citizens of a number of countries are not eligible for an electronic application and they must obtain a visa from a government diplomatic office, no matter the stay and duration of the trip.

An embassy visa will be also necessary for those travelers who wish to spend more time than allowed visa-free or with an eVisa, or who are traveling to Laos for other purposes, such as to work or study.

See the boxes below to learn more about the visa regulations for traveling to Laos according to your nationality.

Tourist Visa Policy for Laos

The tourist visa policy of Laos states that all foreign nationals planning a trip to Laos for tourism need to hold an approved visa to obtain entry to the country.

There are currently 3 types of tourist visa for Laos which visitors need to obtain to visit the Southeast Asian nation, varying by nationality.

Citizens of around 160 countries are able to submit an electronic visa application exclusively online, eliminating the need to apply for a visa in person or wait in long border queues upon arrival.

An approved Laos tourist eVisa is a single entry permit that allows the holder a total stay of 30 consecutive days in Laos for tourism purposes.

Under 10 nationalities are required to obtain a visa on arrival to enter Laos for tourism purposes. This application method usually required the applicant to queue in an immigration line at the border to complete and submit a visa form.

Approximately 80 other citizens are required to apply in person for a tourist visa at a Laotian embassy or consulate. A tourist embassy visa application must be submitted well in advance of the intended arrival date to guarantee sufficient time for processing and approval.

Find below more information about the tourist visa policy for each nationality whose residents want to travel to Laos.

Laos eVisa

The Laos eVisa (electronic visa) can be obtained through an online application form, and has been available since July 2019.

This online application expedites the process of obtaining a visa and eliminates the need to apply in person from an embassy or consulate or wait in long border queues to obtain a visa on arrival.

The Laos eVisa application allows citizens of around 160 countries to obtain a single-entry tourist visa for a total stay of 30 consecutive days in the country. An approved eVisa is valid to enter Laos for 60 days from the date of approval.

Applicants need to complete the form with basic personal, passport, and travel information which usually only takes a few minutes to fill in.

They will also be required to apply with a passport valid for at least 6 months from the intended arrival date, as well as submit an image of the passport biographical page, and a passport-style recent photograph.

While completing the form, applicants also need to indicate the expected arrival date in the country, as well as provide proof of accommodation for their stay in Laos.

Visitors are recommended to apply at least one week before the intended date of arrival in Laos to allow sufficient processing time for the eVisa to be approved.

Once issued, the approved Laos visa online will be sent by email. The traveler is required to print a paper copy of the eVisa to present upon arrival at Laos border control.

Border officials may also request an eVisa holder to provide additional documentation upon arrival to gain entry to Laos, such as proof of sufficient funds to cover the stay.

If an eVisa-eligible citizen is planning to stay longer in Laos or needs to visit the country for purposes other than tourism, they need to apply for a consular visa from a diplomatic office.

Find below a complete list of Laos eVisa-required nationalities.

Laos eVisa Ports of Entry

Holders of an approved Laos online visa need to present a copy of their approved eVisa at one of a select few ports of entry to gain access to the country.

The electronic visa for Laos allows entry by air or land through any of the following entry points:

  • Boten International Checkpoint
  • Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge I
  • Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge II
  • Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge IV
  • Luang Prabang International Airport
  • Pakse International Airport
  • Wattay International Airport

However, eVisa holders are permitted to depart the country through any point of departure in Laos.

Visa on Arrival

Laotian visa regulations require certain foreign travelers to apply for a Laos visa on arrival at a port of entry to the country.

There are currently under 10 nationalities who need a visa on arrival to enter Laos for short stays.

An approved visa on arrival for Laos is granted as a single entry travel document that allows eligible citizens to stay in the country for a maximum of 30 days. However, obtaining a visa on arrival often involves a lengthy application process at a border checkpoint.

To apply, eligible travelers arriving in Laos are required to go directly to an immigration checkpoint, to wait in a queue to receive a visa on arrival application from border authorities.

This form must then be completed with a range of personal, travel, and passport information. After filling in the application, it is also necessary to pay a mandatory visa on arrival fee.

It may also be necessary to furnish a variety of supporting documents before a Laotian visa on arrival can be approved, depending on the traveler’s nationality.

Eligible citizens may obtain a visa on arrival at any port of entry in Laos, with the exception of the following:

  • Napao-Chalo (with Vietnam)
  • Subhun (with China)
  • Pakxan-Bueng Kan (with Thailand)
  • Xieng Kok river port (with Myanmar).

Browse the list below to see if your nationality is required to obtain a visa on arrival in Laos.

Visa on Arrival: Country list

Click on the links below to find out more about each country

Embassy or Consular Visa Required

Visa law of Laos states all foreign citizens from around 80 nationalities need to apply for an embassy visa to travel to, enter, and remain in the country, no matter the purpose of the visit or the period of time they intend to stay.

Most of the countries who are required to submit an embassy visa application to travel to Laos are located in Africa and the Middle East.

The protocol of obtaining an approved embassy visa starts with making a consular appointment at the nearest Laos government diplomatic office to the applicant.

It is then necessary to print and complete an embassy visa application form with personal and passport information, selecting the kind of visa needed according to the purpose of travel, whether for tourism, business, transit, or to work, or study.

Depending on the nationality and kind of consular visa required, a range of supporting documentation will be requested, which the visitor will need to bring along to the visa appointment.

Travelers who need to obtain a traditional consular visa are recommended to apply well in advance of the intended date of arrival in the country, as it may take several weeks for an embassy visa to be processed and approved.

Below you will find a complete list of the citizens that need to submit an embassy visa application to travel to Laos.

Visa requirements checker

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