This page reflects the UK government’s understanding of current rules for people travelling on a full ‘British Citizen’ passport, for the most common types of travel.
The authorities in Laos set and enforce entry rules. For further information contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to. You should also consider checking with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.
Entry requirements in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)
Entry to Laos
The government of the Lao PDR has suspended the visa on arrival service at all international entry points. No visas are being issued to people travelling from a country with cases of COVID-19, including the UK. However, the Lao authorities may consider granting special entry permission for foreigners (e.g. experts, technicians and foreign nationals that are needed for essential projects) who wish to come to Laos.
Entry procedures for Laos visa-holders:
- all foreigners must present a Certificate of Entry (issued by the MFA); a completed Health Declaration form; and a ‘Fit to Fly’ Certificate issued no more than 72 hours prior to travel. You should not use the NHS testing service to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country. You should arrange to take a private test
- all arrivals will be subject to a COVID-19 test at their own expense. Positive cases will be admitted to hospital for treatment
- all negative cases have to undergo 14 days quarantine at designated locations (with all expenses covered by individuals or their organisations/companies)
The application form for the health declaration is available on the official website for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Due to the impacts of coronavirus the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will continue to extend visas in country and be flexible if visas cannot be extended before the due date for operational reasons because of the new regulations.
Screening on arrival
There is compulsory testing for COVID-19 on arrival in Laos at your own expense. Those testing positive will be admitted to hospital for treatment.
Enhanced health screening is in place at border crossings between Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam where restricted access is allowed. You should allow additional time to include this possibility and check with your airline if travelling by air.
Anybody travelling to Laos with a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, and a travel history from coronavirus affected countries, will be isolated in hospital and tested. The hospitals being used are Mittaphab, Mahosot, Setthathirath and the National Military Hospital (103).
All arrivals testing negative for COVID-19 will have to undergo 14 days quarantine at designated locations, which include hotels (with all expenses covered by individuals or their organisations/companies). A mandatory tracking device is fitted on arrival (a rental fee applies) to be worn during quarantine.
All travellers must have insurance covering COVID-19; a suitable policy is available for purchase on arrival.
Testing on departure
There is no compulsory COVID testing on departure from Laos. You should check all conditions of air ticket purchases carefully with airlines as some may need evidence of a negative COVID test to travel.
Regular entry requirements
Visa conditions change regularly. For the most up to date information, contact the nearest Lao Embassy or Consulate.
If you’re eligible for a visa when you enter Laos, make sure you get an entry stamp in your passport. Not having a legitimate entry stamp could lead to arrest or a large fine.
In normal circumstances, overstaying your visa is a serious offence in Laos and the police are likely to issue heavy fines and detain those who are caught. Tourist visas can be extended 2 times and up to a total of 90 days. Tourists need to check in with the immigration every 30 days in order to obtain this extension.
It has been announced that previously suspended overstay fees will be reintroduced. You should ensure your visa is up to date or confirm any arrangement you have in place with the Immigration department.
Your passport should have at least 6 months’ validity remaining on your date of entry into Laos.
Additionally, be aware that a number of airlines will now only allow boarding of flights to Laos if you have two blank pages in your passport.
Yellow fever certificate requirements
Check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s TravelHealthPro website.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are accepted for entry, airside transit and exit from Laos. If you’re planning to enter Laos using a UK ETD you should contact the nearest Lao embassy or consulate to get the appropriate visa before you travel.
If your passport has been lost or stolen, you must report the loss or theft to the nearest police station and get a police report. You’ll then need to get a certificate of loss from the Immigration Department in Vientiane which usually takes 1 to 2 working days.
After getting an ETD from the British Embassy, you’ll need to get an exit visa from the Lao Ministry of Foreign Affairs which takes up to 3 days.