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Vietnam Approves 2-Year Extension of E-Visa Pilot Program for 46 Countries

For another two years, tourists from a range of countries will be able to enter Vietnam for 30 days with an electronic visa.

Because of its general success, on October 16, The National Assembly (NA) Standing Committee decided to extend the program, according to Dan Tri. The resolution establishing it was passed in November 2016 and it would otherwise have expired this coming February. 

The program allows holders of passports from 46 different countries, including Japan, Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States (full list of approved nations here) to apply for the US$25 single-entry Visa online up to three days before arrival at any of the nation's international airports. 

When first announced, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc stated that the government would allocate VND200 billion (US$8.96 million) to expedite the project's implementation. When first introduced, people had some access issues which have since been resolved.

Early platform hiccups aside, the system has generally been a success. As of August 31, 241,875 people have entered Vietnam with e-visas. 

Deputy Minister of Public Security Le Quy Vuong says the policy has succeeded in attracting foreign tourists who are crucial to the country's tourism sector. It has also assisted Vietnam's greater integration into the global community and diplomatic efforts. Vuong, however, noted that awareness of the program needs to increase so more people can take advantage while more countries need to be added to the approved list.

The e-visa extension coincides with a recent decision to continue a program that allows 15-day, visa-free entry to five European countries and larger efforts to increase tourism. Vietnam hopes to attract US$35 billion in tourism dollars by 2020.

[Photo via Vietnam VS]


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