After the rant about Chinese visas I should probably talk about how visas should be done properly. The process of applying for a Vietnam visa is about as painless as it can get.
They lump together tourist and business visa information all into one place, which does complicate things, but you can mostly get what you need to know.
It’s also rather hard to work out what you need to pay as the logic is very complicated. It worked out to be £120 for both Serena and I.
- Fill out online form
- Get PDF of form emailed to you
- Print of the form
- Attach a passport photo to the form (not sure if this is needed, one of the situations where the English is not perfect)
- Post that form along with your passports, payment (we’ll come onto this in a minute) and a self-addressed but not stamped envelope to their address using Royal Mail Special Delivery
- Wait and hope it doesn’t get lost as you don’t hear back for a few days
- Get your passports back with the visa!
Sounds pretty painless, and it was, but anyone that knows me knows I can’t just end there and I need to complain about something… so here goes.
Cheques (or as Americans call them checks) are pretty much the only way they accept payment. You can’t pay online using card, you can’t post cash and you cant transfer to a bank account (unless you pay for express service). I don’t have a cheque book. I don’t think I’ve had one for over 10 years, so I had to ask a family member who still had one of these archaic ways of paying…
Fix that, Vietnam, and you’ll have a very good visa application service!