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How to get a visa for Cambodia

Updated on April 7, 2011

Most foreign nationals will require a visa to enter Cambodia as a tourist. There 3 ways to obtain a visa for Cambodia, from the embassy in your home country, at a border crossing into Cambodia or over the internet before you leave home. Each of these options has its own pros and cons.






Nationals that do not require a visa to enter Cambodia


  Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam

From the Cambodian Embassy in your home country

The simplest option for obtaining a tourist visa for Cambodia is to do it via the embassy. If the Cambodian embassy happens to be in your home town this process becomes even easier.  Check the embassy’s website for business hours.  To apply you will need your passport (valid for at least another 6 months), passport size photos and a cheque or money order for the cost of the visa made out to the Royal Embassy of Cambodia.

However if the embassy does not happen to be close by this option will quickly become the most costly.  Applications can be made by post.  It would not be wise to send your passport by anything other than registered post and even this is not a failsafe method of transporting your most valuable identity document.

If this is the method that you choose and you are willing to pay for convenience a travel agent can arrange a courier service to take your passport, photos and cheque to the embassy. 

The appeal of this option is that when you arrive in Cambodia you can skip the line for visas at the border and head straight to customs.  This option might also appeal if you are planning to road border crossing into Cambodia where visa scams are rife.

Nationals that cannot enter Cambodia on an e-visa


Afghanistan, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Nigeria

At the border of Cambodia


Internet travel forums are abound with horror stories of road border cross scams.  However if you are flying into Cambodia and you don’t mind standing in a line this option is worth considering. At Phnom Penh and Siem Reap airports this option is as simple as having a valid passport, 2 passport photos and $20US.  Then standing in that dreaded line.

E-Visa from the Cambodian Government Website

In 2006 the Cambodia government launched its E-visa system. Applications are made via the website and cost $20US for the visa plus a $5US processing fee. The website states that the process takes 3 days and your visa is then emailed to you. You then print off this document and present it at the dedicated e-visa lines at Phnom Penh or Siem Reap Airports. This option can also be used some road border crossings which are listed on the website. The visa remains valid for 3 months from the date of issue and there is an option for changing your arrival dates on the website if your travel plans are not concrete.

The photos that you provide for this service can also be taken yourself with a digital camera, saving you money on purchasing more passport photos. The photo tips page explains in more detail how to take your photo, formats accepted and document size allowed. It is worth navigating to this page if only for the reminders to not submit a photo of yourself with your pet and to wear a top in your visa application photo. The fact that they have to spell this out on the websites means that this must have been an issue for them.



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