Even though the pandemic in Vietnam has been looking up, travel restrictions – especially international travel – remains strict. In the meantime, professional experts and skilled workers from overseas are allowed to enter the country, yet, everyone still has to comply with stringent procedures to be able to work and stay in the country legally and safely. Here is some essential information you need to jot down when preparing for your business trip to Vietnam.
The Current Situation in Vietnam during COVID
There have been newly-confirmed positive cases in Vietnam since the second outbreak in the country winded down. As of this moment, Ho Chi Minh City and other Southern provinces (Binh Duong, Dong Nai, Long An, etc.) are the “hotspots” of community outbreaks in Vietnam, which heavily affects not only the locals but also the surrounding areas. Fortunately, all current cases were timely detected when passengers had just entered Vietnam and have been put into quarantine and treatment immediately to prevent community infections.
Traveling Restrictions in Vietnam during COVID
Ho Chi Minh City: due to the new surge of COVID cases in the city, Ho Chi Minh City has banned public transportation and traveling to other areas. Since June 2021, the authority has imposed a strict lockdown measure, banning all outdoor activities (except for grocery and medical emergencies) and locals are not allowed to go out from 6 PM to 6AM. Tan Son Nhat Airport has also suspended international flights and limited domestic flights until further notice.
Hanoi’s International Airport has also suspended international flights.
Vietnam has suspended flights from the UK and South Africa due to the surge of COVID variants in these countries. Land borders with China, Cambodia, and Laos are currently closed, except for importing and exporting goods.
Public Guidelines in Vietnam during COVID
National social distancing is still applied, though the extent can vary in each province due to the difference of severity in each area. Avoiding large gatherings and wearing masks are still the norm. Many public activities and events have been canceled until further notice to ensure the public’s health and safety. With that said, life amid the pandemic has returned to somewhat normal as long as people take safety precautions seriously.
Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City have issued the closure of non-essential businesses.
For the latest official updates of virus-positive cases in Vietnam, keep an eye out for the https://ncov.moh.gov.vn/en/web/guest/trang-chu website – the official website of the Ministry of Health for COVID information. The website is mostly in Vietnamese, but with a little help from a translating app, you can stay updated with the current COVID situation in Vietnam, especially for traveling to Vietnam for work during COVID.
Visa and Work Permit Procedures for Traveling to Vietnam for Work during COVID
Visitors staying in Vietnam since March 1st, 2020 are allowed to have an automatic extension till May 30th, 2021 without extra penalties, provided that they have proofs to have been stuck in Vietnam since and must acquire a letter from the embassy.
Vietnam Work Permit
A work permit is not required if you’re coming to Vietnam just for a short business trip. For a career plan in Vietnam longer than 3 months, a permit is required for working legally, as well as applying for a Temporary Residence Card (TRC) and a working visa in Vietnam. If staff is detected working in Vietnam without a work permit, the company and the staff will have to face a fine, and the employee may get deported from the country.
In certain circumstances, work permit exemption is allowed, but you have to apply for an exemption certificate, which is equivalent to a work permit and valid for 2 years.
For more details on obtaining a Vietnam Work Permit, see our guide here.
Important Notes for Applying for a Work Permit:
- Ideally, a work permit should be applied at least 15 days before traveling to Vietnam for work during COVID. This will allow you enough time to gather the necessary documents and for the Vietnamese authority to process your application.
- Some documents (university degrees, etc.) must be translated into Vietnamese, and the chances are that your company’s HR department in Vietnam can help you take care of this. Otherwise, there are also professional agencies in Vietnam that can aid you in the process.
- Applying for a work permit, TRC, and working visa is separate processes, and all must be acquired before you start your work in Vietnam.
Need some assistance with the legal procedures? See our suggestions for legal services in Vietnam:
Vietnam Work Visa
Getting a Vietnam visa is the first step of coming to work in Vietnam
Vietnam has suspended visa applications since March 25th to limit international travel. On the bright side, international borders in Vietnam have reopened, and professional experts, managers, and skilled workers are allowed to enter. However, certain changes in the terms and conditions regarding Vietnam visa must be noticed:
|Work Visa Types||Purpose||Validity|
|LD||LD1-2||Foreign workers/Working visas||2 years|
|LV||LV1-2||Working with Vietnamese authorities|
|LS||Lawyer visas||5 years|
|DT||DT1||Investors with total investment capital over USD 4.35 million or of “prioritized” sectors by the Vietnam government||5 years|
|DT2||Investors with total investment capital over USD 2.17 – 4.35 million or of “encouraged” sectors by the government||5 years|
|DT3||Investors with total investment capital over USD 130,500 – 2.17 million||3 years|
|DT4||Investors with total investment capital less than USD 130,500||12 months|
|DN||DN1-2||Working with Vietnamese businesses||12 months|
|EV||Electronic visas||30 days|
|NN||NN1-2||Chief Representative Office in Vietnam, Head of Project Office of foreign NGO||12 months|
|NN3||NGO staff, Representative Office||12 months|
|PV||PV1-2||Press and Foreign Correspondents||12 months|
Entry Procedures for Traveling to Vietnam for Work during COVID
Once you’ve got the much-needed paperwork down, get yourself familiar with the traveling process so you’ll land in the country prepared, and avoid uncertainties on your trip.
Entry Requirements for Traveling to Vietnam for Work during COVID
- Travelers must present a letter to declare your purpose of traveling into Vietnam to the authorities, including your job details and travel plans. The Vietnamese people’s committees will screen the documents first and then forward them to the Immigration Department, which will permit you to access the country.
- Travelers must take a COVID test 3 days before entering Vietnam at a medical center certified by your home country’s government or by WHO.
Quarantine and Testing Requirements for Traveling to Vietnam for Work during COVID
For travelers staying in Vietnam for less than 14 days, quarantine is not required as long as you only stay in one designated place, follow a certain schedule for your business itinerary, and can provide 2 negative COVID tests. Downloading the Bluezone app to keep your travel in check and follow safety measures seriously.
Travelers will receive a certificate for completing quarantine in Vietnam
For foreign workers staying in Vietnam longer than 14 days, you will be submitted to quarantine right after landing in Vietnam. Foreign workers can choose to quarantine at your company’s facilities (factory, apartments, headquarters, etc.), at a designated hotel, or at the government’s quarantine camp. You are also expected to pay for your quarantine, testing, and treatment (if any) fees. The cost of staying at a governmental quarantine facility is roughly VND 120,000/day (USD 5).
Vietnam aims to lift quarantine requirements for business people and officials from Japan in terms of short-term visits. Having said that, visitors are still monitored closely and must comply with safety protocols strictly.
If you’re staying at a hotel in Vietnam for quarantine, the cost depends on each hotel’s policy and the services you use during your stay. Your international health insurance should cover the testing and treatment costs in Vietnam.
COVID testing has to be taken at least twice during the quarantine period, and travelers will need to be under a 14-day surveillance period in case of possible infections after quarantine.
Free masks distribution on the street of Ho Chi Minh City
On-site testing will take place right after you arrive at the airport
Check out the Checklist for Traveling to Vietnam during COVID-19
In Conclusion of Traveling to Vietnam for Work during COVID
As a welcoming country for international tourists, professionals, and investors, the recent restrictions have been the toughest measures Vietnam has ever taken in terms of tourism and traveling. On the other hand, these are a few examples of Vietnam’s strict policies to prevent the outbreak of COVID in the country. On a whole, keep an eye out for the legal process and take health and safety precautions seriously, and you’re all set for your career path in Vietnam.
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