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Southeast Asia Visas
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Southeast Asia Visas

So you've bought your flights, and chosen your Stray pass, and suddenly it hits you - you're going to need Southeast Asia visas. Maybe lots of them. Never fear, we've compiled a list of everything you need to know about visas for our Stray Asia destinations. It is your responsibility to organise your visas, please please ensure you do. Visa information is subject to change, so it is wise to double check this information with the embassy of the country you will be visiting. One thing that is certain, you will need a passport with at least 6 months validity from the date you plan to leave Asia.

Without further ado, in alphabetical order, here are the requirements for Southeast Asia visas.

Bhutan | Borneo | Cambodia | Laos | Thailand | Vietnam


Cost: $50USD

All tourists (except those from India, Bangladesh and the Maldives) will need a visa to enter Bhutan. These visas must be obtained through your tour operator and approved at least 30 days before you trip. Stray applies for the visa on your behalf. You just need to provide us with a scanned copy of your passport (photo and information page) and where you will enter from (flight details).

Once approved, you will be sent a visa clearance letter with confirmation code. You'll need to print this document, and bring it with you to the border, where your visa will be stamped into your passport, and away you go!

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Borneo (Malaysia)

Cost: Free

Borneo is an island shared by three nations. On the Stray route, we visit the Malaysian part of Sabah. Most countries (including New Zealand, Australia, United Kingdom, United States and most of Europe) are issued a free 3 month visa on arrival. Your work here is done!

Good to know: Yellow fever vaccination proof is required only if you have been in an infected area in the 5 days prior.

Check if you need a visa here.

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Cost: $30-35USD (plus processing fee up to $5USD)

With Stray you can enter Cambodia from either Laos, or Thailand, depending on the pass you've chosen.

From Laos

There are 2 border crossings at Don Kralor, one is a river crossing at the village of Veun Kham, which is closed to foreigners. The second crossing is a road crossing on the main highway which is open to foreigners. This is the border you will cross with Stray.

Most nationalities can get a visa on arrival from the Cambodian border. Check here to see if you can. If so, just bring your passport, $30-40USD in cash, and a colour passport photo to the border.

Good to know: Cambodia has an online visa system, however this border crossing does not have the capacity to process E-visas. If you arrive at this border with an E-Visa, you will be required to pay again. Sometimes a processing fee of $1-5USD is added to your visa price.

From Thailand

This section of your trip is unguided, however help is available. The same rules apply, just jump off the bus with your passport, $30-40USD in cash, and a colour passport photo. The same bus that you get off in Thailand will meet you on the Cambodian side, and there is usually a staff member from the bus company available to assist you if necessary.

Check your country's requirements here ('Who need visa' tab).

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Cost: $30-50 USD (depending on where you're from)

Most countries can get a visa on arrival at the Laos border. With Stray, you'll be coming from Thailand and you'll have your tour leader to help make this a smooth crossing. At the border you'll need your passport, a colour passport photo, and USD in cash. Then your tour leader will give you a form to fill out and help you get your visa.

Good to know: Sometimes a processing fee of $1-5USD is added to your visa price.

Check your country's visa status here.

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Cost: Free

54 countries are exempt from paying the visa fee for Thailand (check yours here). If you're crossing a land border, you will a 15 day visa; if you fly into an international airport, you get 30days.  So you just need to show up with your passport and you'll be granted your visa. Voila! Your bus or train will drop you at the border and wait for you on the other side.

Check your visa requirements here.

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Cost: $25USD (E-Visa)

You need to obtain your Vietnamese visa before arriving at the border. Most travellers can do this online here. We recommend getting this organised several weeks in advance so that you can travel with assurance. Once you've completed the application and paid the fee, you'll be emailed the visa, which you need to print and bring with you to the border. You can also obtain a visa by visiting the Vietnamese embassy in your home country. 

Good to know: You must make sure the entry date you put on your visa application is on or after the day you plan to enter Vietnam. If you arrive at the border before the entry date on your visa you will be refused entry and told to come back on the entry date.

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Hot tips

In some countries, you may be asked to prove that you have sufficient funds for your travels, and proof that you intend to exit the country. In saying that, we have never encountered problems at any of these borders.

Double triple check that your passport is valid for 6 months after you return from travelling.

Print colour passport photos before you go, and keep them somewhere safe. 

Requirements for your Southeast Asia visas can change. Please check this information with the relevant embassies before you travel.

Post published: 18 September 2018