Hi, I'm sorry there is already a thread but I am really really confused about what to do and keep getting conflicting advice.
Am planning on a 3 month backpacking trip. Fly from UK to Thailand, stay there for about 4 weeks, then cross border over to Laos for about 2 weeks, then Vietnam for about 3 weeks and then into Cambodia. Then need to get back to Thailand to fly home.
Doing it all on foot except for the flight in and out of Thailand at the beginning and end.
What do I do about visas? And how would I have proof of onward travel?
i believe you can get visas as you go, or you can get them all at once before you leave. except, there's a possibility the individual countries would say that the visa you get would begin to be valid on the day you get it...so if you get it two weeks from entering said country, that's when it starts working... i found out india's system works like that, so i have to get my visa a bit closer to the date of my actual arrival there.
thailand asks for an onward plane or train ticket, so i suggest finding a route to take you out of the country and buying a ticket for it. ..otherwise, you probably won't be allowed in. so perhaps find a bus or train from the last point you will be spending in thailand, before you go to laos and buy it in advance as proof. only thing, i forget how the visas work there - i'm not sure if you're allowed to go back into thailand right away or whatnot. perhaps contact your local thailand consulate and ask them for that detail?
i hope this helps a little bit though?
hope you have a great trip!
Hien has posted all the rules the Thai Immigration post on their website at the top of this forum. It does state that you need proof of onward travel if you accept the free 30 day entry permit when entering Thailand. In reality, they don't ask. You have a return ticket leaving Suvarnabhumi, that will satisfy them if by some remote chance they pick you out for exceptional scrutiny. Thailand wants tourists, they are not out to deny entry to those bringing money into the country. Fill out your arrival form, have your passport and boarding pass ready and you will be fine. Don't stress on arriving in Thailand.
Laos will issue you a visa on arrival, 30 days for $30. When in Vientiane, buy your VietNam visa. VN does not allow visa on arrival at their land borders just yet. I assume you are going north to south in VN. You will use the
Moc Bai/Bavet border crossing. If you go with several of the major bus companies in the Pham Ngu Lao area of HCMC, they will get your Cambodian visa for you at the border. It cost $12 for the bus: HCMC-PP. You pay $25 for the Cambo 30 day visa + $5 fee to the man on the bus to handle it all for you. It takes about an hour at the border and all you do is collect your passport when they call your name. Very easy. Load your bags back on the bus, over to a small restaurant for lunch, then on to PP. I use Sinh Cafe as they stop at Capitol GH & Restaurant once in PP. This a good option IMO. The Capitol run buses everywhere you may want to go. Day tours, Killing Fields, Battanbang, Kampot, Siem Reap, Poipet, Sihanoukville, Bangkok, Koh Kong. Cheap rooms and cheap food as well. Good place to know when in PP.
There are several ways back into Thailand via road, but all will issue you another free, 30 day entry permit. As long as you fly home within that 30 days, there will be no problems.
I did most of this trip in April-May. Nha Trang to Mui Ne. Mui Ne to HCMC, HCMC to PP. PP to Sihanoukville, S'ville to Pattaya. Pattaya to BKK, all via road. I am in the process of posting photos of that trip now. I also have heaps of other photos of VN, Cambodia & Thailand in my gallery. Send me a PM if you have any questions. Have a great time in SEA.