Visa guide for Americans traveling around Asia

Let's visit ALL THE PLACES!


But first...


What visa do Americans need to travel around Asia?

Here's the information that I have found for US Citizens as of September 2017. This alphabetical list is composed based on places that we would like to visit, mostly in Southeast Asia. This is related only to tourism and does not include information on work or business visas.

Note: VOA is Visa On Arrival into the country and requires no previous filing.

Note: make sure you have at least 6 months left on your passport. Many countries also require an outbound ticket; they probably won't ask, but if they do, be prepared to either show proof that you are leaving, or buy a cheap ticket on the spot!

Turn this sideways on a mobile device to better optimize the table layout.

Visa Round-up
Country Days w/o visa Days w/ visa Cost VOA or before visiting? Other requirements
Cambodia - 30 days US$36 VOA at Siem Reap and Phnom Penh, and border checkpoints.
  1. Application (provided on the plane)
  2. Passport
  3. 2 in. x 2 in. recent passport photo
  4. May need to prove you have money and an exit ticket.
China (excl. Hong Kong, Macau) - 60 days US$140 "L" Visa before arrival submitted in person or by an agent to your state's Visa Office.
  1. Application
  2. Passport
  3. A very specific passport photo
  4. Proof of round-trip airline ticket plus accommodation whilst in China, or an invitation letter.
Hong Kong 90 days Extension possible w/ visit to Visa Office - - -
Indonesia 30 days 30 days + extension (30 more); Visit Visa available for longer 30 days FREE; with extension to 60 days: US$60 VOA Check out Bali Floating Leaf's fabulous guide to extending your visa in Bali and our more specific info on extending your visa in Singaraja, North Bali!
Japan 90 days - - - -
Laos - 30 days, can be extended for $2 per extra day at immigration office in Vientiane US$50 VOA at airports and checkpoints
  1. Application
  2. Two color passport photos
Macau 30 days - - - -
Malaysia 90 days - - - -
Maldives 30 days 60 day extension possible w/ visit to Visa Office and ~US$50 - - Bring your hotel reservation to show you have ample funds.
Mongolia 90 days Multi-entry three-year extension possible w/ visit to Visa Office and US$160 - - Register with the Immigration Authority of Mongolia within 7 days if you are staying longer than 30 days.
Myanmar - 28 days US$40 or $50 for eVisa Visa before arrival at a Myanmar Embassy or get an eVisa
  1. Allow a few days for processing.
  2. You can go to an embassy in another country (e.g. Bangkok).
  3. Submit digital 4.8 cm X 3.8 cm color photo for eVisa
  4. Get eVisa within 90 days of your visit.
  5. Bring a couple of photos, plus itinerary if buying the visa at an embassy.
Philippines 30 days - - - -
Singapore 90 days - - - -
South Korea 90 days - - - -
Sri Lanka 2 days (for free transit visa) 30 days (tourist) US$35 VOA possible for US$440 or apply beforehand online. -
Taiwan 90 days 90 days w/ re-entry possible with paid pre-arranged US$164 tourist visa. - - -
Thailand 30 days 90 days possible with pre-arranged Tourist visa before arrival, plus US~$60 paid extensions. - Acquire your visa before visiting, if you are planning to extend. Two longer-term visas are available but must be obtained at an embassy before going to Thailand:
  1. Thai Tourist/Non-Immigrant Visa (single-entry, 90 days, US$80)
  2. 1-Year Non-Immigrant Visa (multi-entry, 90 days at a time, US$200, can extend, can apply for work visa or extension, but more difficult to get approved).
Tibet - ? ? Before visiting, or you can join a group once in China
  1. Requires China tourist visa (see above)
  2. Requires an extra Tibet Travel Permit
  3. Requires that you are traveling with a group/guide, so I strongly recommend that you check with your guide for details.
Vietnam - 30 day single-entry with eVisa or 30 or 90, single- or multi-entry, or 1 year multi-entry US$25 for eVisa, or $6-$20 for others, plus stamp fee on arrival (cash US$25-$135) VOA at airports only, but make sure you've done the pre-arrival application because you need a letter! Follow the instructions of your service provider for longer visas, or fill out the eVisa and make sure you have USD cash at the airport!
  1. Visa approval document
  2. Two passport photos
  3. USD stamp fee
  4. Vietnam Entry and Exit Form

Good news! You can visit Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, the Maldives, Mongolia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, and Thailand without a visas! If I missed any countries, please comment below and I will add the information for how Americans can travel there with free or paid visas. Safe and happy travels!


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