If you or your parents have Vietnamese origins and don’t know how to apply for Vietnam 5-year visa? More information about application, fee… on this page
5-year visa to Vietnam
If you or your parents are of Vietnamese origin, you can apply for a five-year visa. You are also eligible if you are married to a Vietnamese citizen. Basically, it’s a five-year visa, which requires you to leave Vietnam every six months (you can actually cross the Cambodian border and come back soon). Most people consider this an opportunity to visit a neighboring country.
To get this visa, you usually do not need much. Although the official website lists many different items, some of us at Vietcetera actually only have visas with our passports. All we need is the US $ 100 (plus $ 20 for quick completion). Please note that charges may vary, so be sure to bring extra cash in case.
Step 1: Gather the necessary documents and fill out the paperwork.
Application form: A completed 5-year visa, Vietnam visa exemption application form here
2 passport photos: A couple of 4×6 photos (white background) of the applicant on demand.
Passport: Needs to be valid for at least 1 year, your current Vietnamese visa needs to have at least 7 days remaining (I only had 6 days remaining and had to find a Vietnamese travel agency and pay them US $80 for a one month, single entry visa extension)
1 original document proving you were either born in Vietnam or the child or spouse of a Vietnamese national: This could be a Vietnamese passport, birth certificate, or verification of marriage. My U.S. birth certificate stated that my parents were born in Vietnam so that was enough proof.
Step 2: Go to your country’s embassy or consulate to get your foreign document verified.
For U.S. citizens in Vietnam, the address is: 4 Le Duan, Ben Nghe, Quan 1, Ho Chi Minh
Cost: US $50
Timing: For a notarial service, you’ll have to make an appointment online ahead of time. The earliest appointment slots are usually four weekdays out. Once you arrive at the U.S. Consulate, the whole procedure takes less than an hour and is relatively painless.
Step 3: Go to the Vietnam Office of External Relations to get the verified birth certificate authenticated and translated to Vietnamese.
Vietnam Office of External Relations
Address: 184 Bis 1, Pasteur, Ben Nghe, Quan 1, Ho Chí Minh
Cost: VND 210,000
Timing: about 1 week
Go up the stairs and into the glass office just to your right. There should be a tray on one of the counters so that you drop your verified foreign documents. Then, sit on one of the chairs leaning against the wall and wait for them to call your name. It will not take more than 10 minutes.
Step 4: Go to the Vietnamese Department of Immigration to submit your application and documents.
Vietnamese name for department: Cục Quản lý Xuất nhập cảnh TP. HCM
Address: 333-337 Nguyen Trai, Nguyen Cu Trinh, Quan 1, Ho Chi Minh
Cost: US $10
Timing: Exactly 7 days
When you enter the building, go straight to counter 14 (no need to pick up and wait). Give them your application and documents and they should know what to do. Then, go to the counter and wait on a nearby chair until they call your name to pay US $ 10 or VND equivalent. The entire process will take less than 30 minutes and is quite simple.
In 7 days, return to the building and go straight to the counter indicated on your receipt, hand them the receipt in exchange for your passport, and enjoy your shiny new 5-Year Visa Exemption!
Vietnam 5-Year Visa fees
Alternatively: There are people lurking around the Vietnamese Department of Immigration who will offer to take care of everything for you for US $150. Because I was cheap and thought I could save money by doing it on my own, I refused help and ended up spending a lot more time and money than anticipated (because I needed my visa extended due to it being short by one day). In the end, I had to take hours off of work over a series of weeks to sort out everything and only saved $0.79.
Moral of the story: Don’t be cheap. You can just pay someone to run around Ho Chi Minh City for you and deal with the bureaucracy. Unless you were born in Vietnam, in which case it will only cost you US $10 and about an hour total of your time.
Here is the website to apply for Vietnam 5 year visa with 150$: https://Visaonlinevietnam.com