Filipino citizens can now visit Vietnam but only if they have important reasons. Tourists are still not allowed to enter the country at the moment. However, Filipinos who need to go to Vietnam to work or do business can now apply for their visa. The visa exemption program has temporarily been discontinued so the only way for Filipino citizens to go to Vietnam these days is to apply for a visa.
Changes to Vietnam Visas Due to Covid-19
Filipinos are among those nationalities that can visit Vietnam visa-free. But since the Covid-19 virus is still spreading rapidly in several countries, the Vietnamese government would like to control the entry of visitors. As a result, they have discontinued the visa-free privileges so all visitors to Vietnam must first seek permission from the Local People’s Committee and apply for a visa. They should also have a sponsor company in Vietnam that will send a letter to the Local People’s Committee to ask permission on their behalf. When their visit is approved by the Local Committee, they will be granted a business visa.
Who Can Enter Vietnam During the Covid-19 Pandemic?
As mentioned, only eligible foreign visitors will be allowed to enter Vietnam these days. Tourists or travelers visiting for leisure purposes will be denied entry. Below are the only foreign travelers that can enter Vietnam during this Covid-19 pandemic.
- Foreign diplomats
- Experts working on projects that the Vietnamese government has considered important
- Investors and businessmen
- Foreign visitors on official duty
- Skilled workers and business managers
- Special caseworkers
Take note that even if you are eligible to enter Vietnam these days, the Local People’s Committee must first approve your visit.
Vietnam Business Visa Requirements for Filipino Citizens in the Covid-19 Period
Filipino citizens who wish to go to Vietnam for work or business must have the following requirements for their visa to be approved:
- Sponsor company – this is your employer or the company that will invite you to Vietnam.
- Letter asking permission to visit Vietnam – this letter must be written by the sponsor company and addressed to the Local People’s Committee
- Hotel booking for the 14-day quarantine, which is required for all travelers.
- A pre-booked vehicle to pick you up from the airport and drive you to your quarantine facility.
Process of Applying for a Vietnam Business Visa this Covid-19 Pandemic
Here’s the process of applying for a Vietnam business visa:
- First, your sponsor company should seek permission from the Local People’s Committee to grant your visit. The letter should mention the reason why you need to go to Vietnam and other important details about your trip.
- If they will approve your visit, they will issue a travel permit. Now that you have a travel permit, your sponsor company can start to apply for your business visa.
- Your sponsor company can now go to the Vietnam Immigration Department and apply for a visa on your behalf. Aside from the travel permit, your sponsor company should submit some other documents, including your passport.
- After about a week or two, the Vietnam Immigration Department will issue the visa. Now you can book your flight to Vietnam.
As you can see, traveling to Vietnam during this pandemic does not come easy. You need to have a sponsor company that will request permission and applies for the business visa on your behalf. If you find it complicated, you can contact a local agency in Vietnam to ask for assistance.
You also need to have travel insurance for your trip to Vietnam during this Covid-19 pandemic. If you can’t provide proof that you have insurance, your sponsor company should sign an agreement that they will shoulder the cost of your treatment should you get sick with Covid-19.
Covid-19 Test and Quarantine Requirements
To ensure that all travelers entering Vietnam do not carry the Covid-19 virus, the Vietnam government would like all travelers to undergo a Covid-19 test at least 3 to 5 days before their trip to Vietnam. Then they must present the negative result of the test at the check-in counter when boarding their flight. They will also be required to present the certificate upon entry into the country. Take note that they will only accept the certificate if the test was conducted at a WHO-certified testing laboratory in the Philippines.
Aside from the negative Covid-19 certificate, the Vietnamese authorities will also want all visitors to undergo quarantine for 14 days upon their entry into the country. This is to make sure that the virus will not spread within the local community. So before flying to Vietnam, you need to book your hotel stay in advance. The Vietnamese government has provided a list of hotels where foreign visitors are allowed to quarantine. This should also include a pre-booked vehicle for airport pick-up since foreigners won’t be allowed to take the taxi before their quarantine.
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