Vietnam greatly limited visitor entry to the country ever since the pandemic began and only removed flight restrictions this past February.
Then the country reopened fully for international visitors this past March and reinstated visa waivers and visa-on-arrival issuance for foreigners.
After being in Thailand (Bangkok, Koh Samui & Phuket) for two weeks, I flew to Ho Chi Minh City this past Thursday, and it was refreshing how little documentation was needed. Essentially, I was only required to have a PCR-RT (within 72 hours) or an antigen (within 24 hours) before departure to Vietnam.
Bamboo Airways had a list of entry requirements at its check-in desks at Suvarnabhumi Airport.
As is usually the case when I am flying to Vietnam, the agent was typing their computer for a while (I assume that this was to check the entry requirements per Timatic), and I was then asked to show:
2. Proof of insurance
3. Onward ticket (I am actually flying to Bangkok)
The requirement of making an electronic health declaration had already been removed.
And soon, I had the boarding pass in my hand.
Immigration at Ho Chi Minh City was empty when the flight arrived (so was the arrivals hall), and I was asked if I had a visa (not required), and then I was stamped for 15 days. No other documentation was needed.
Vietnam’s Road To Reopening:
I am one of the nationals (Finland) that don’t require any visa to enter Vietnam for up to 15 days, not even visa-on-arrival, and I was able to extend this once in the early 2010s with the help of a local agent in HCMC.
Now, if we can only drop the predeparture covid-test requirement when traveling to Vietnam, we would be back to prepandemic travel convenience.