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Official Vientiane Visa Crackdown!


agogobar
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Hi friends, I just noticed a front page article on one of the major bi-weekly newspapers here in Pattaya that the Thai embassy in Vientiane has officially adopted a policy of a 3 visa limit for tourist visas and after that you are out of luck.

 

I wish I could remember the particular newspaper, I just did a search but could not find it but it was Pattaya People or Pattaya Daily Mail or one of those. The article said that this rule was specific to Vientiane and that the other embassies in the region were unaffected by this.

 

The paper also speculated that since visas are currently free through March 2011 that it was feasible that this crackdown would be loosened after they start charging again in April. I sure hope thats the case because I have exactly 3 prior TR visas in my passport and was planning to go to Vientiane this April so I am sure at least in the short term this will affect a lot of people including possibly (but hopefully not) myself so just thought people on the boards here should be aware. \

 

The reason I like Vientiane is because they give double entry visas without a fuss and I have heard other places it's harder to get a double entry so I have never gone anywhere else. Is this true that double entry visas are hard to get in say Phnom Penh or Penang?

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The first time I went to Vientiane for a visa was back in '97, and at that time there were about 6 people ahead of me in the queue. Fast forward to 2008 I found there were now 200+ ahead of me in the queue so it's really no surprise they stopped issuing visas as many of the applicants were clearly not there for just a holiday. There are several threads on ThaiVisa.com about using Vientiane FYI.

 

Penang has been notoriously difficult to obtain a tourist visa in for the last 10 years, but Cambo looks promising as some visa agents are still running trips up to the border at Poipet.

'Fools rush in where angels fear to tread' - TiT

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....................

The reason I like Vientiane is because they give double entry visas without a fuss and I have heard other places it's harder to get a double entry so I have never gone anywhere else. Is this true that double entry visas are hard to get in say Phnom Penh or Penang?

 

 

We tried and failed in Phnom Penh - Single only.

 

People were getting Doubles through Agents from the Poipet (I think) border crossing, but I heard that was getting more difficult.

 

As you say, if they become chargeable after March things may charge. If that's what they think will happen it would be daft to be forgoing future revenue I suppose?

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Just to be clear, I dont want for someone to read that and think they cant go to there... they are still issuing visas, but once you have reached 3 tourist visa stickers in your passport they wont issue you another one, just FYI-

 

...it's really no surprise they stopped issuing visas...

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Come and see me if you have visa problems.

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Just to be clear, I dont want for someone to read that and think they cant go to there... they are still issuing visas, but once you have reached 3 tourist visa stickers in your passport they wont issue you another one, just FYI-

 

 

 

From what i have read the last few months there is not a clear and fast rule such as 3 it depends on the judgement of the staff.

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I have heard something about that... getting a double entry through people at poipet which is where I usually go to activate the second entry once I have the actual visa from Vieniane but the last time I went there and inquired about it all I got was blank stares so not sure about that.

 

We tried and failed in Phnom Penh - Single only.

 

People were getting Doubles through Agents from the Poipet (I think) border crossing, but I heard that was getting more difficult.

 

As you say, if they become chargeable after March things may charge. If that's what they think will happen it would be daft to be forgoing future revenue I suppose?

Edited by agogobar

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The article in the paper stated that this was a new bulletin that was actually posted in the Vientiane embassy and did not leave it up to the discretion of the individual immigration official so they sound like they are serious about it. As I said before hopefully when they start charging again in April they will relax that but unfortuately I have to go mid April so i am not sure if that is enough time to get field reports back as to how they are treating people with 3 prior TR visas. I also wonder if paying the touts that hang around outside the embassy would grease the wheels or not. Possibly.

 

From what i have read the last few months there is not a clear and fast rule such as 3 it depends on the judgement of the staff.

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I have heard something about that... getting a double entry through people at poipet which is where I usually go to activate the second entry once I have the actual visa from Vieniane but the last time I went there and inquired about it all I got was blank stares so not sure about that.

 

Activating whatever you've got isn't the issue.

 

I said getting a Double Entry through Agents i.e. you booked and travelled with an Agent (6-8k incl night in hotel) who dealt with officials at Phnom Penh.

You can't just turn up at the border and do it yourself, or even in PP we found and anyway that option seemed to be getting more difficult.

 

You're a bit behind on your reading with this one.

I suggest you start with Jerry's Topic 2 weeks ago HERE and then follow the Link I gave to the thread at thaivisa.com.

 

Then you should be up to speed. :GoldenSmile1:

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