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Visa Cambodia

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Joined: 2-Jun-04
Posts: 595

Unlike its neighbour, Thailand, Cambodia does not offer most Westerners a free tourist visa on entry. However, when it comes to business visas, Cambodia easier makes up for this is the relative ease of acquiring the necessary stamps.

To avoid having to go through the usual immigration process of applying for a visa on arrival, which can sometimes involve dealing with a lengthy queue, these days a Cambodian e-Visa can be purchased prior to your trip online at with a $25 payment through PayPal. However, this e-Visa only operates as a tourist visa, so business travellers who need to stay longer or need a multiple entry visa will need to apply for a Cambodian business visa through the conventional channels at the airport on arrival.

If for some reason the company you’re planning to work for fails to obtain a Cambodian visa on your behalf, don’t despair as it’s relatively simple process to acquire one yourself.

There are two types of visa available: tourist or business. The tourist visa, at a cost of $20 on arrival at Phnom Penh International Airport, entitles its bearer to remain in the country for one month. This can be renewed only once without having to depart the country.

In order to remain in the country for longer than two months or to work, you will require a Business Visa. Like the tourist visa, an initial business visa can be obtained on arrival at Phnom Penh airport at a cost of $25. You will need to have indicated on the visa application form provided to you by your airline by marking the appropriate business visa box, and presented it along with your passport (which must be valid for at least six months and have at least one empty page) together with a passport-sized photograph. Fortunately proof of intended or actual employment is not a requirement.

The initial business visa is valid for only one month but can be extended in-country for periods of 1, 3, 6 and 12 months. However be aware that the 1 and 3 month extensions are only single entry whereas the 6 and 12 month extensions permit multiple entries/exits without invalidating the visa.

Although it is possible to apply on your own behalf at the immigration office near Phnom Penh International Airport, it is much less hassle to get an agent to do it for you for a modest fee. Almost all travel agents offer this service and are usually able to return your passport and visa to you within 24 hours. These agents tend to charge similar fees for business visa extensions.

As a guideline, the following is an approximate pricing schedule:
1 month – $30
3 month – $75
6 month – $145
A 12-month, multiple-entry visa costs $265 to $300, depending on the fee added by the agent. The agent’s fee is usually somewhat negotiable.

Also, upon expiry of your business visa, it’s currently easy to obtain a further extension through the same travel agents.

Work Permits
Foreign employees must have a valid visa, work permit, and employment card issued by the Ministry of Labor, which is obtained by your prospective employer. Employers must ensure that these work permits are renewed annually.

Work permit for foreigners in the Kingdom of Cambodia shall consist of two types:

a. Temporary work permit for foreigners shall be issued to the following persons:
● Staff and management specialists
● Technical staff
● Skilled workers
● Service providers or other labors

b. Permanent work permit for foreigners shall be issued to the following persons:
● foreign immigrants duly recognized by the Minister Interior
● Foreign Investors, spouses, and dependents duly recognized by the Council for the Development of Cambodia.

Both work permits shall not be issued to children of either sex under 18 years old.
Children shall be registered under the work permit of their parents or guardians.

Article 2:
Procedures for applying for work permits shall be the followings:

a. Temporary work permit:

The application for temporary work permit shall be sent to the Ministry of Interior.
1. 3 sets of the Application Form as issued by the Ministry of Interior.
2. Attached with passports or any equivalent documents with proper visa.
3. 3 Photographs (4×6), taken in the front without hat or glasses.
4. Certificate of Health from a physician of the immigrant country, and written work contract.
5. Insurance policy issued by employer or any insurance companies.
6. Fees for temporary work permit.

b. Permanent work permit:
The Application for permanent work permit shall be sent to the Ministry of Interior.
1. Photocopied document recognizing as immigrant or investor.
2. Attached with passport or any equivalent documents with proper visas.
3. 3 Photograph (4×6), taken in the front without hat or glasses.
4. Certified statement from any banks in the Kingdom of Cambodia, verifying a bank deposit as defined in the Anukret.
5. Fee for permanent work permit.

Article 3:
Police stations of provinces and municipalities shall accept applications for work permits and forward them through their governors to the Ministry of Interior for review and approval.

Article 4:
The temporary work permit shall not have a validity exceeding the approved visa.
The permanent work permit shall be initially approved for 2 years.
This work permit can be renewed every two years.

3 months prior to the expiry of the work permit an application shall be filed to the Ministry of Interior for renewal through the police station of municipality or province of their residence.

In the case of a loss of a work permit the holder must complain to the police station of the province or municipality along with explanations and apply for a duplicate work permit. The police station of the province or municipality shall issue a receipt acknowledging the application for duplicate work permit, and send their forms to the Ministry of Interior.

Where extensions to work permits have not been applied for or have expired, continuing to work in their absence shall be considered an illegal act.

Applicants applying for an extension of their work permit, or for its duplication, shall pay taxes as defined by Anukret.

Article 5:
In the event of a change of address, the holder shall notify the Foreigner Office of the Police Station of the province or city before his departure to the new address. A new work permit must then be obtained within 48 hours from the arrival at his/her new address.

Article 6:
Work permits may be use as an identity card.

Article 7:
Both kinds of work permit may revoke in the following cases:
● non compliance of the Law on Immigration, or
● non compliance of the laws of the Kingdom of Cambodia, or
● for reasons of national security and national interest, or
● contrary to public order.

(from the Prakas on the “Management of Foreigners’ Work Permits” 10 November 1995)

Expat Admin's picture
Joined: 2-Jun-04
Posts: 595

Cambodia visas

For many potential expats, the easy visa situation in Cambodia is one thing that makes moving to the country so appealing.

You can get a long-term visa for Cambodia easily and renew it indefinitely without being sponsored by a company (or having any particular qualifications to do anything, in fact). This is certain to tighten up eventually, but for now Cambodia is one of the easiest countries in the world to emigrate to, visa-wise.

As a visitor to Cambodia, there are two types of visas available to you.

Types of Cambodia visas

Cambodian tourist visa. The tourist visa (T class) is best for those who know they will be staying 30 days or less.

The 30-day tourist visa is available to travelers in advance or on arrival (for most nationalities) for a cost of $30. The tourist visa can be renewed once for an additional 30 days for a fee of $45. After that, tourist visa holders must leave Cambodia and come back and obtain a new visa. If you are planning on staying in Cambodia, don’t bother with a tourist visa and start with an ordinary visa instead.

Cambodian “ordinary” visa. For anyone who is considering staying in Cambodia for an extended period of time, the ordinary visa (E class) is the best option. This visa used to be called the business visa but is now called the normal or ordinary visa. It is also valid for 30 days and costs $35. The difference between the ordinary visa and the tourist visa is that the ordinary one can be extended indefinitely. Be aware that although the “ordinary” visa is often called a “business visa,” it does not confer the right to work in Cambodia. In order to be legally employed, you will need a Cambodia work permit.

Once you have your first 30-day ordinary visa for Cambodia, you can extend it from inside the country for 1, 3, 6, or 12 months. It’s advisable to extend it for 6 or 12 months, as these visa types are multiple-entry. The 1- and 3-month ordinary visas are single-entry only, meaning that if you leave for a weekend trip to Vietnam, you’ll need to get a new Cambodian visa when you return.

It’s important to note that if you are planning on getting a visa on arrival, some airlines will not allow you to enter the country on a one-way ticket. If you are planning on getting a one-way ticket, give yourself extra time at the airport so that if your airline requires you to get a return flight you have time to either search for a cheap flight or bus ticket (try Giant Ibis to HCMC) or get a fully refundable ticket that you can then cancel once you arrive in Cambodia.
Applying for a Cambodia visa
What you need to apply for a visa to Cambodia:

A passport that is valid for at least another three to six months (reports vary, but they aren’t usually very concerned about this) and has at least one blank page
A passport-size photo (if you don’t have this, you can just pay a $2 fee)

Where to apply for a Cambodian visa:

At the airport. If you’re from most countries, you can get a visa on arrival at both of the Cambodian international airports, Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. You do not need to do anything in advance–you’ll be given the paperwork on the plane and you just need to get in line on arrival with your passport photos, cash (in US dollars), and passport. There is an ATM at the airport in arrivals that dispenses US dollars if you don’t have any on hand.

At a Cambodian embassy. If you prefer to get your visa in advance–or if you are from Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, or Sudan–you’ll need to visit the closest Cambodian embassy in your home country. (And if you are from one of those restricted countries, you’ll need a return ticket and sponsor letter or letter of invitation from an employer or organization.)

At a land border crossing. You can also apply for a visa at the following Cambodia land border crossings:

Cambodia-Vietnam border

1. Bavet International checkpoint
2. Kha Orm Sam Nor International checkpoint

Cambodia-Thailand border

1. Cham Yeam International checkpoint
2. Poipet International checkpoint
3. O’Smach International checkpoint

This isn’t recommended, though, as getting visas at land border crossings in Cambodia is generally a hassle, requiring numerous bribes and payments. It’s best to get a visa in advance, before attempting a land crossing. If that’s not possible, don’t worry, but expect to pay between $1 and $20 in extra “fees”.

Online: the E-visa. One other option is the Cambodian E-visa, which can be obtained online. It is only available to citizens of the same countries for which visas on arrival are available (that is, everyone except citizens of Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, and Sudan). It is only offered for the tourist (T class) visa and costs an extra $7 on top of the regular visa fees, and it is only available to those entering Cambodia at the Siem Reap and Phnom Penh airports and the Bavet, Poipet, and Cham Yeam land border crossings. You can get your Cambodian E-visa online (
Extending or overstaying your Cambodia visa
Extending your Cambodian visa

If you have a 30-day tourist visa, you can extend it one time for an additional 30 days for a fee of $45. If you have an ordinary visa (E class) you can extend it for 1, 3, 6, or 12 months for between $45 and $300.

Currently, Cambodian visas cannot be renewed online.

Technically there’s an official way to extend your visa by going to this address:

Department of Immigration
322 Russian Boulevard, Opposite Phnom Penh Airport
Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Everyone who’s tried it this way recommends against it, though. The process can take ages, may require multiple bribes and is just generally a pain.

The easy way to extend your Cambodia visa is to use any of the hundreds of local travel agents in town. They’ll take care of the paperwork for you and it takes two business days.

You’ll need:
A passport that is valid for at least another six months
A blank page in your passport
One passport-sized photo
Renewal fee in US dollars

A 12-month, multiple-entry visa costs $265 to $300, depending on the fee added by the agent. The agent’s fee is usually somewhat negotiable.
Overstaying your Cambodian visa

It’s not advisable, but you can overstay your Cambodian visa at a cost of $5 a day for the first 30 days and $6 a day after that, payable at Immigration on your way out of the country.

If you plan to only stay a few days more than 30, this is often cheaper than getting a visa extension. However, be warned that you’ll need exact change in US dollars. If you present them with a $20 bill for a $15 overstay, it’s very likely that you won’t be given change.

The Cambodia government immigration site says that overstayers are also liable to pay the cost of an extended visa, but in practice overstayers are only charged the $5- or $6-per-day fee.

This is an excerpt from Move to Cambodia: A guide to living and working in the Kingdom of Wonder. To learn more about 100+ topics that pertain to Cambodia expats, please consider buying the book.


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