1. Do I need a visa to visit Laos, Cambodia or Vietnam?
Visa policies depend on bilateral agreements between your country of origin and the country you intend to visit. So carefully check if you require a visa or not. The links below might help.
Visa for Laos:
If you are required to have a visa to enter Laos, you can get a visa upon arrival at the airport or border checkpoints without pre-arrangement. You only need to provide 2 passport size photos and pay a fee of $25 USD (the amount of the fee may vary depending on the nationality of the passport holder). It takes about 15 minutes to complete the process and get a visa.
Visa for Cambodia:
Like Laos, travelers can get a visa upon arrival at the airport or border checkpoints without pre-arrangement. Same as in Laos, you only need to provide 2 passport size photos and pay a fee of $25 USD (the amount of the fee may vary depending on the nationality of the passport holder). It takes about 15 minutes to complete the process and get a visa.
Visa for Vietnam:
Please note that Vietnam does not currently have a real visa upon arrival policy. The term “Visa upon arrival” is a very common (and confusing) misuse of Vietnamese language. Visas to Vietnam should ALWAYS be pre-arranged. The cheapest and easiest way is to request an invitation letter through GP Travel. After that, the authorities will arrange the visa, and the “visa upon arrival” desk at the airport will collect the visa fee and stamp your passport (those desks are present at the three international airports in Vietnam located in Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City).
There are visa exemptions to enter Vietnam, for citizens of the countries listed below and only for stays limited to the following amount of time:
- Up until 14 days: Brunei, Myanmar
- Up until 15 days: Belarus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden
- Up until 21 days: Philippines
- Up until 30 days: Cambodia, Indonesia, Kirghizstan, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand
For others requiring a visa to get into Vietnam: please click here to get more details.
2. Do tours include inbound and outbound flight tickets?
No, our tours do not include either inbound or outbound flight tickets. Visitors should book their flight tickets by themselves. There are many airlines which have direct flights to Vietnam, including: Vietnam Airlines, Air France, American Airlines, Thai Airways, Japan Airlines, Singapore Airlines, and Malaysia Airlines. If needed, you can still ask GP Travel to take care of booking your flight tickets. However, all airfares must be fully paid before the given deadline.
3. What type of transportation is used during the tours?
Depending on the itinerary, suitable transport means are selected. Usually, for distances up to 400km, travelers will board a coach or bus. For longer distances, we recommend you to either take a train or plane, depending on the duration of your travel. For several tours, all kind of transport could be taken: pedicab for visiting a city, bicycle, motorbike, boat, etc. Finally, regarding Sapa, the sleeper train is often used, but it is also possible to take a sleeper bus for shorter travel time.
4. What type of hotel is available during the tours?
The type of hotel ranges from 2-star hotels to luxury resorts depending on each itinerary and on the customer’s requirements. The type of hotel can also depend on the availability in a given location. GP Travel always takes field trips to visit hotels, in order to guarantee the quality of the service in each and every selected facility in terms of cleanliness, comfort, and hospitability.
5. What type of room do you offer?
The type of room includes Standard, Superior, Deluxe, and Executive. Unless single rooms are required, the tours we organize use twin or double sharing room. Also, based on visitors’ requirement, we can arrange triple rooms and connecting rooms which are more suitable for family trips.
6. What are the usual check-in and check-out times?
Generally, check-in time is after 2pm and check-out time is until 12pm (noon). Depending on the availability of the rooms, it might be possible to check-in earlier or check-out later than the official time; however, the hotel may request the guest to pay an additional fee.
7. Are there any restrictions on photography in Vietnam?
Yes, taking pictures is prohibited inside or near military installations, airports, and other similar areas. Anyone caught could be fined and have the film/memory card – possibly the camera – seized. Some museums require visitors to buy a photography ticket in order to take pictures. Therefore, it is preferable to check with your tour guide to make sure that taking pictures is not forbidden.
8. Is vegetarian food available during the tours?
During our tours, we always try to serve authentic local food which varies upon each destination. As for vegetarian people: do not worry, many restaurants serve good vegetarian food. If you are allergic to any kind of food or if you have specific diet requirements, please notify us during the booking process.
9. Why are some meals not included in the tour package?
We exclude some meals such as lunches or dinners so that you have the opportunity to explore on your own. Vietnam is very famous for street food; therefore we let you have free time to discover yourself, rather than repetitively eat at restaurants.
10. Do I have to tip in Vietnam?
Tip is not required in Vietnam. However, if you are satisfied with the service provided by your tour guides and your drivers, you can give them a small tip to show your appreciation.
11. How is the weather like in Vietnam?
Northern and Southern Vietnam have two very distinct climates. While the South has a tropical monsoon climate, the North has a humid climate of subtropical type.
As a result, the temperature oscillates year-long between 30oC and 35oC in the South, and monsoons set in during summer (from May to September). There are 4 seasons in the North and temperatures can differ greatly between winter and summer, especially in the mountainous regions of the North where it can even snow occasionally. It rains a little bit all year, with a peak during the summer.
Hence, please make sure to bring adequate clothing, depending on when you travel and on the destinations in your itinerary.
12. What should I bring for my trip?
As usual, we suggest visitors to travel as light as possible. Bring just enough clothes, as most hotels have laundry services. Vietnam has a tropical climate so visitors should bring hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Based on the itinerary, we will send you specific lists of what to bring during the trip.
13. What currency should I take?
The currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong. The US Dollar is widely accepted throughout Vietnam. The Euro is also used, but not as much as the US Dollar. Visitors can exchange money at the airports, banks, and official money exchange centers. It is relatively easy to change money in every major city.
14. Can I use my credit card in Vietnam?
Yes, you can withdraw money at ATMs. Nowadays, most shops, hotels, restaurants, and other businesses accept payment by credit card. For Visa and MasterCard holders there is usually a 3% surcharge fee.
15. Why does tour exclude insurance?
According to Article 7 of our terms and conditions, we require that all clients subscribe to an international travel insurance. As travel insurance contracts come in various forms and cover diverse levels of risk (not mentioning the contracts attached to credit cards), we leave the travel insurance matter to our clients’ discretion.
16. Is there dengue fever or malaria in Vietnam?
Occurrence of dengue or malaria is very low in Vietnam. No preventive medication is specifically required. However, bringing a mosquito repellent is always advisable.
17. What will happen if any health problem occurs?
If any serious health problem arises, you will be immediately taken to the nearest international hospital for an immediate examination and treatment according to your insurance. Visitors should be cautious when eating and drinking; avoid using tap water and low-quality ice in drinks. Heat can also be a problem: try to manage your efforts wisely and make sure to be hydrated. In any case, ask your tour guide for advice. For some trekking tours in mountainous areas, visitors may need vaccinations. We will give you specific advice for every itinerary.
18. Is it safe to travel in Vietnam now?
Recently, you might have heard some news about the dispute between Vietnam and China regarding territories in the South China Sea, but it is very safe to travel in Vietnam. Travelers are welcome throughout Vietnam. GP Travel always try to minimize risks and guarantee the safety of every guest on the tours by constantly being in touch with local authorities and organizations disseminating information regarding security measures. Overall, Vietnam is a very safe country to visit.
19. What is GP Travel’s cancellation policy?
Please refer to article 6.2 of our terms and conditions.
20. What are GP Travel’s payment methods?
Please refer to article 5.2 of our terms and conditions.