The Border Run to Laos

For those of you whose 'permission to stay' stamp is about to expire, here's how to get an extension.Those with a valid non-immigrant O visa with the option for two or multiple entries, you will get a new 90 day stamp, a valid tourist visa with two or multiple entries will get a 60 day stamp. Citizens of 55 countries who want to enter the country without a valid visa overland (Tourist Visa Exemption), will receive 30 days permission to stay: List of countries

Please note: since May the 10th 2014, the number of entries without a visa (Tourist Visa Exemption) into Thailand has been limited to one per visitor. It is no longer possible to renew the permission to stay in Thailand by leaving and immediately re-entering into the country without a valid visa. As of August the 12th 2014, this restriction is also planned for entries via an international airport.

Even travelers who wish to travel to Thailand on a tourist visa may be subject to checks as to whether the reason for their trip is purely touristic. Anyone who has already spent some time in Thailand on tourist visas must be able to show the border guards sound documents and evidence to show that the proposed stay in Thailand is solely of a tourist nature. Otherwise he can be refused entry by border officials.

If you need a new non-immigrant or tourist visa you will have to visit the Thai consulate in Vientiane.

Anyway, the border run:

You need to take your passport, a separate passport photo, a pen, and money to pay for the Laos entry visa.

Arrive at the Friendship bridge in Nong Khai. If you haven't done the border run before you may prefer to use one of the many visa shops situated just before you get to the bridge, they will charge an extra 300 - 400 THB but will take care of all the details: otherwise -

Go through the Thai passport control where you will get a 'departure' stamp in your passport.

Ticketschalter für den Bus   Der Bus über die Friendship Bridge

Buy a bus ticket (15 THB) and board the bus, this will take you over the bridge and drop you in front of the Laos border control.

From the Laos border control window 2 collect and fill in two forms: the arrival / departure card, and the request for a Laos entry visa. At window 1 hand in the forms along with your passport, a passport photo, and money for the entry visa. The charge varies for different nationalities but it's $35 US for Brits. You can pay in Baht, but it works out to be about 100 THB more expensive.

A few minutes later your name will be called from window 3 and you collect your passport. Check that the entry Visa has been stamped correctly. Pass around the back of the building to the exit kiosks - check that the 'departure from Laos' stamp has been added to your passport. Now you may like to purchase some duty free goods from the many shops to your right.

Buy another bus ticket (20 THB) and board the bus, this will drop you at the Thai entry kiosks. Collect and fill in the arrival / departure card and hand them in with your passport. Check the stamp you receive is correctly dated.

Done! The whole process generally takes an hour to 90 minutes, depending on how busy it is.

posted on: 01.10.2012 - last update on: 01.09.2017

This article ...

User comments

At 05/14/2014 - 18:21 wrote the Udon-News-Team

The information given in the article has been updated!

At 05/14/2014 - 16:39 wrote guest

As from May 2014, this information is no longer correct.


Edit: Link removed

At 12/05/2013 - 06:46 wrote guest
This article is excellent for a first time border visa run.

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