Posted By : Threeland Travel / Travel Guide (Top Tips & advice)
Vietnam holidays currently are in a top list of must-see places to Australian citizens. Surprisingly, you can stay here for days, weeks, and even months and still not feel tired of visiting some of the scintillating places. Culturally diverse and naturally exquisite, overtly friendly and historically rich, the curvaceous country of Vietnam has it all, the country will serve you with things more than you would have expected. We would say you should skip none of the below-listed things to prepare for a Vietnam tour package. It may take months to discover them all, then you’d better get prepared ahead of time for your visa, money, flight or a good plan of your Vietnam tour by keep reading this blog...
1.How to get a visa for Vietnam from Australia?
Australian citizens absolutely need a visa to enter Vietnam, visitor visas are available for 30 or 90 days. You can choose one of the available ways below to apply for a visa to Viet Nam.
a.Apply at Vietnam consulate or Embassy in Australia
This is the traditional way to get Vietnam visa. It is germane for all residents and for all boundary in Viet Nam (airports, land or sea). You can apply by post or in person at the Vietnam embassy in Australia.
To apply for a Vietnam visa at the embassy of Vietnam in Australia, you will need to:
- Contact the Vietnamese Embassy or Consulate nearest to your place to apply for a visa.
- Prepare the documents for visa application: normally a completed and signed visa application form, original passport, a passport-sized photo, (and sponsor letter from a Vietnam partner if you wish to get a business visa), (and 01 new envelope with the stamp on it and your exact home address to receive your visa by post, if allowed), (and the visa fee in AUD by money order or cheque if applying by post).
- Look in the embassy/consulate to accede the application documents or send them by post (if allowed)
- Get the visa and original passport from the embassy (directly at the embassy/consulate or by post (if allowed). It takes around 3-5 working due to the Embassy’s workload, or you can pay extra for same-day express service. Be sure to organize your visa well ahead of time.
- If you already have a passport, make sure that your passport has at least 6-month validity counting from the date of arrival and blank pages left for a new stamp.
There are 3 offices of Vietnam embassy/consulate in Australia: Consulate General of Viet Nam in Sydney, Consulate General of Viet Nam in Perth, and Embassy of Viet Nam in Canberra. Please find information as below:
Consulate General of Viet Nam in Sydney
Address: Suite # 205, Level 2, Edgecliff Centre
203-233 New South Head Road Edgecliff, NSW 2027, Australia
Phone: (+61) 2 9327 2539
(+61) 2 9327 1912
Fax: (+61) 2 9328 1653
Vietnam Embassy in Australia
Add: 6 Timbarra Cresent, O’Malley, ACT, Canberra 2606, Australia.
Consulate General Of Viet Nam in Perth
Address: 8th Floor, No.16, St.Georges Terrace, Perth WA 6000
Phone: (+61) 8 9221 1158
(+61) 4 1376 9616
Fax: (+61) 8 9225 6881
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | email@example.com
b.Get e-visa for Australian citizens
For those who are not able to go to the Consulate General to apply for the visa in person or do not want to apply by post, you can apply for a Vietnam e-visa through the Web Portal on Immigration. You can also apply for a tourist visa through the Vietnamese Embassy in Australia’s website. The costs and processes differ between these two websites.
Australian citizens can apply for the e-visa online and have the accepted and approved visa attached to their passport but are only valid for a maximum 30 days. The processing time for the ETA visa takes 3 days working. Not only saving time, but the fee is also quite cheap at just around 25 USD per person for tourist single entry visa with no additional fee on arrival. E-visa fee is paid via an electronic payment gateway as prescribed by the Immigration Department. The fee will not be refunded if the application is refused.
Vietnamese e-visa at Vietnam National web portal on immigration
Procedures for e-visa declaration for foreigners:
- Step 1: Access the website address of online visa application.
- Step 2: Online declaration of personal information, entry information ... according to the form displayed on the website and confirm the accuracy of the information.
- Step 3: Pay for a visa online with Visa Card or Master Card online payment tool.
- Step 4: After a period of 2 or 3 days as prescribed Immigration authorities will send via email to the visa applicant a text file, that text file is an electronic visa.
- Step 5: The visa applicant prints an electronic visa file sent to him by the Immigration Office and completes the electronic visa application procedure.
- Step 6: When foreigners enter Vietnam, present their passport and e-Visa at the place of entry procedures.
For visitors traveling by air, Vietnam e-Visa should also be considered because of the superiority below:
- No require to travel to Embassy or send-off the passport
- No extra fee upon arrival (the visa stamping fee will be included in the online fee)
- No need to wait for stamping upon arrival (but still need to wait for identification checking)
c.Get visa on arrival
Have no time? Have no experience in dealing with the visa procedure? - then “ Visa on arrival” is the best option for you. Visa on arrival has been currently sketched much more notice of those living in Australia with their advancement, including, time-saving, convenient and trouble-free.
Visa on arrival
In order to pick up your visa on arrival, you must have a visa approval letter from Vietnam Immigration with a sponsor from a travel company in Vietnam then you are able to get visa on arrival. To avoid visa fraudulence, you should find an international tourism company or prestigious organization that is capable of guaranteeing for customers to offer you visa service.
- Vietnam visa on arrival can only be used if you are flying into any of Vietnam's four international airports (Tan Son Nhat airport (Ho Chi Minh City), Noi Bai airport (Hanoi City), Da Nang airport, and Cam Ranh airport (Nha Trang), not at land crossings.
- Beware of scam agencies and websites selling fake letters: As the Consulate cannot properly verify the reliability of online visa services offered by many visa/travel companies on the Internet, it is strongly recommended that travelers should obtain appropriate visas before entering Vietnam. Fraudulently issued visa will be refused entry and fee is not refundable. There have been reported cases of fraudulence and personal data theft when applying for online visa and cases of entry refusal on arrival when these types of online visa are applied through bogus/un-recognized websites with no connections to the Consulate. The Consulate is not able to provide assistance to travelers in case they are refused entry while using these types of visa. In order to avoid any risks of personal data theft or losses through fraudulent use of credit/debit cards, travelers are strongly recommended not to provide personal information on untrusted websites.
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Here are 4 simple steps to get a visa on arrival to Vietnam from Australia:
- Step 1: The visa agency asks you to fill in the “Secured application form” with required information such as full name, date of birth, passport number, arrival date, etc.
- Step 2: Make payment for service fees include:
+ A fee online for the visa approval letter: the amount depends on the type of visa and how many you are requesting. This fee is paid online to your visa agency.
+ A fee upon arrival for the visa stamp: US$25 for a single entry visa and US$50 for multiple entries (1-3 months). The stamping fee is paid in cash only in either Vietnamese dong or US dollars, so be sure to prepare enough money in cash before you depart for Vietnam.
- Step 3: Receive and print the approval letter
You will typically receive the approval letter and an Entry/Exit Form via email within 2 business days (for tourist visa) or 7 working days (for business visa), or faster in urgent case after your online application submission and payment. You need to print the approval letter and the filled Entry/Exit Form which needs to be shown upon arrival in Vietnam to get your visa stamp.
- Step 4: Get full visa stamped at one of four Vietnam international airports.
Prepare the following things to present for a visa stamp in your passport:
+ Your passport: with at least six months of validity remaining at the date of your arrival in Vietnam and has plenty of blank pages for visa stamps.
+ Prepare 02 passport-sized photos (4x6cm) taken without glass wears or clear background
+ Your approval letter.
+ The filled Entry/Exit Form.
+ Cash payment.
In case of getting any problem with your visa in Vietnam, contact or come to Australia
Embassy in Vietnam:
Australian Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam
Address: 8 Dao Tan Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi, Vietnam
Telephone: (+84) 24 3774 0100
Fax: (+84) 24 3774 0111
Australian Consulate-General in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Address: 20th Floor, Vincom Center, 47 Ly Tu Trong Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Postal address: PO Box 659, Central Post Office, Ho Chi Minh City
Telephone +84-28 3521 8100
Fax: +84-28 3521 8101
Website: Australian Consulate-General in Vietnam website
Vietnam visa extension
You can extend your visa to Vietnam as long as the total time of your stay is less than 6 months. However, remember that your visa will be extended for single entry only (maximum of 3 months).
You can extend your ongoing visa for a maximum of 02 times.
- Original passport
- Your living or staying address in Vietnam
You can extend your visa in big cities like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, and Hue. The extension fee is much cheaper than the renewal fee.
2.Flights from Australia to Vietnam and vice versa
Vietnam welcomes all the homogenous entrance of Australia citizens with hospitable attitude on a yearly basis. There are numerous best flights to Vietnam from Australia for the holidaymakers to book and enjoy. Still, many airline carriers fly between Australia and Vietnam, with just one stop en route, which is Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Darwin or Bangkok. Via the simple research, you come up with dozens of flight options to arrive in Vietnam.
Flight from Australia to Vietnam
Daily flights from Sydney, Canberra or Melbourne to Ho Chi Minh City connected in Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Bangkok. Say that you are looking forward to the trip from Canberra to Ha Noi, I highly recommend you to choose Cathay Pacific (via Sydney and Singapore) or Singapore Airlines (via Melbourne and Singapore). Otherwise, you can use various airlines services, such as Emirates (from Canberra to Sydney and Bangkok), and Vietnam Airlines (from Bangkok to Hanoi).
Vietnam Airlines has been operated direct flights between Ho Chi Minh City and Sydney the price can be 30% higher compared to other routes. We can named some airlines that run the route between Vietnam and Australia with layover such as Cathay Pacific, Dragonair, Thai Airways, China Southern, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Airlines, Qatar Airlines, Malaysia Airlines.
Due to the condition, the ticket price is usually quite expensive. To find cheap light, you should have a research and book tickets about 2 – 3 months before the trip. On the other hand, travel booking websites such as traveloka.com, agoda.com or booking.com, etc usually provide the competitive deals of flight and hotel which, if lucky, you can own airplane tickets with the best price, sometimes it is only about 50% of the original price.
Note: Vietnam Airlines direct flight from Sydney to Ho Chi Minh City is about 8 hours 20 min.
Things are not allowed to be on board
Things below should be excluded from your luggage:
- Weapon, ammunition, explosives and inflammable objects
- Military technical equipment; drugs, opium, and other narcotics
- Anti-government literature; pornographic literature, etc.
On top of this; antiques, some types of precious stones, wild animals, rare and precious plants listed in Vietnam’s red-book could not be exported
3.Cash in Vietnam
The official currency in Vietnam is Dong (VND), which has been pretty stable against for many years.
The Dong is non-exchangeable and according to the latest exchange rate on Vietcombank bank website (updated in September 2019) trades at approximately 15,742 VND to 1 AUD.
Vietnam currency (VND)
It is unusual to pay for the bills by AUD (they are preferred Vietnam Dong or USD). Of course, the AUD is also accepted among majors restaurants, hotels or supermarket center.
However, the drawback to this is that the prices will be altered from Dong at the dealer’s chosen exchange rate, which may have a higher trade valuation than in banks.
If you intend to exchange your home currency for Dong, make sure that your cash is undefiled and flawless, as banks and other exchange station will not permit any cash which is rent, excessively rumpled or have any words on them. But on the bright side, recent year, the Vietnamese Government has issued policies to encourage the people using cards instead of cash. Credit cards are accepted in many restaurants, hotels, and shops, especially in the larger cities with usually a surcharge of 3% in Vietnam’s big cities. Visa, Master Card, JBC and American Express are the most common credit cards honored in Vietnam.
ATMs are found throughout the country, even in small towns. Cash is king, you can only withdraw VND for all kind of cards. But for international debit cards and international credit cards, you still can withdraw money with the exchange rate of the bank. But be careful here, some of cash dispensers are “out of service” quite often, and some banks allow a maximum withdrawal of between VND 4 million to VND 9 million.
Make certain that you get the best knowledge of numerous “0”. Someone will be puzzled because of so many zero numbers in VND. Take it easy, let we tell you, the smallest denomination is currently 1,000 VND, while the largest is 500,000VND. Be cognizant value of Vietnam Dong, 20,000 notes are slightly similar in color to the 500,000 one, but the cost is much bigger.
- Don’t change too much money at one time, ‘cause you will be baffled with a large wad of notes.
- Keep 500,000 VND away from other Dong note, less chance of confusing them.
- Banknotes are currently issued 100, 200, 500, 1,000, 2,000, 5,000; 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, 100,000, 200,000, 500,000 Dong. Most are clearly identifiable by colour. You can get the illustration from Wikipedia or images of them on Internet.
- Be careful when you agreeing on prices with Taxi drivers you catch randomly, you always have to ask for the cost before deciding to go or not, as they might extortionate driving prices. Highly recommended you download app Grab, Be, Go-viet, they already have fixed price on app, and also got promotion for users day-by-day.
- Take noticeable denominations of note, you might be swindled by street sellers when you are short-changed by a factor of ten. In case of you may receive five 10,000 VND as “500,000 VND”
Where to change your money?
Anyway, before leaving your country to remember to exchange your home currency into Vietnam Dong. I can suggest you some places to trade them such as banks or airport moneychangers, but take note that they can change your money at a high cost relative to a jewelry shop in Hanoi's Old Quarter, so it pays to ask around before trading AUD for Dong.
- Airports: Most domestic and foreign airports have foreign currency exchange points, even in waiting rooms. In case you have just come to the airport and still have lots of AUD but you don’t need to use it anymore, you should change it directly at the airport for convenience. However, take note that change money to Vietnam Dong at the airports will be less than outside.
- Banks: This can be considered the most legal and safe money changer currently applied in Vietnam. The procedure for exchanging foreign currencies is not too complicated, you just need to bring identify card. In addition, there are many agents licensed to convert to serve visitors such as Agribank, Eximbank, Sacombank, Vietcombank. All you need to do is come and choose the currency you want to convert.
Exchange currency at Banks
- Gold and jewelry shops: Currently, most gold shops are not licensed to convert foreign currencies, usually they are spontaneous activities. Of course, not every gold shop is licensed, the transaction points need to require lots of different criteria. Therefore, you should consider carefully, especially to discuss directly with the store about foreign currency exchange license. Some well-known local money exchange shops address: Shops in Hanoi's Old Quarter—particularly Hang Bo and Ha Trung streets—offer better deals, as do gold and jewelry shops in Ho Chi Minh’s Nguyen An Ninh street.
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