Visa Trip to Laos from Pattaya with Tour Company

 

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A VISA RUN WITH A TOUR COMPANY TO LAOS WILL COST YOU AROUND 8,000 BAHT AND IS THE EASIEST WAY TO GET A DOUBLE ENTRY VISA

GET A DOUBLE ENTRY TOURIST VISA WITH A TOUR COMPANY TO LAOS FOR AROUND 8,000 BAHT AND TAKE THE STRESS OUT OF YOUR TRIP

 

TOUR COMPANY VISA RUN IN A NUT SHELL
    • 8,000 – 9,000 BAHT FEE’S
    • 3 DAY TRIP
    • ALL PAPERWORK DONE BY COMPANY
    • LAOS VISA INCLUDED IN PRICE
    • ALL TRANSFERS INCLUDED IN PRICE
    • THAI VISA’S INCLUDED IN PRICE
    • OVERNIGHT STAY AT HOTEL INCLUDED IN PRICE
    • 3 MEALS AT HOTEL RESTAURANT INCLUDED IN PRICE
    • ALL TRANSFERS BACK TO PATTAYA
    • DRIVER SORTS ANY PROBLEMS EVERY STEP OF THE WAY

 

DOING IT YOURSELF

Of course you can save a couple thousand Baht and do the trip by yourself, by taking a VIP bus to Knong Khai, but this takes some knowledge and effort to accomplish.

CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO READ FULL ARTICLE ABOUT HOW TO CATCH THE  V.I.P. BUS TO THE THAI EMBASSY IN LAOS –

VIP BUS TO LAOS

 

 

MAKE A  TOUR COMPANY BOOKING

Booking a Visa run to Laos with a tour company by minibus is a good way to take the stress out of your travel plans, for around 8,000 – 9,000 Baht,  just sit back, enjoy the ride and let them take care of all the problems for you.

 

A QUICK TRIP TO KNONG KHAI

Here’s how my recent Visa Run to Laos went when I booked with a tour company-

It started good, I was told I would be picked up at 7 – 7:30 pm, at 7:30 got a call from the driver that he would pick me up at in 15 mins, at 8:00 he arrived and I got in the minivan. That was 15 minutes in Thai Time.

We stopped for fuel and were on our way along highway 331 and then onto highway 304 all the way to Korat. We arrived Korat 1am and were making good time, we stopped to stretch our legs and have a drink for 15 minutes, then it was back in the van and up highway 2 towards Knong Khai

We arrived Knong Khai immigration at 3:10am, a 7 hr trip, we made good time the whole way and stopped 3 times for a break and everyone was keen to continue.

 

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THE TRIP COMES TO A 3 HR HALT

We were the first to arrive at the location and other minivans started parking behind us every 20 mins or so.

We pulled up 300 meters short of the Immigration check point and a series of removable gates where across the road blocking access until staff arrived to man their stations.

We waited from 3:10 am until 5 am for gates across the road to open, during this time some people were able to sleep in the minivan while others waited at the nearby 7-11 and a small fleet of mini vans were now lined up behind us and people were walking around everywhere.

 

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AT 6 AM IMMIGRATION CHECKPOINT OPENS

At 5:15 am a little old man walked out and started moving the gates and we drove up to the check point and unloaded our bags from the minivan, and then we stood and waited in line until 6 am for immigration to open.

During the 30 mins we stood in line waiting for the immigration booths to open, a new lady guide appeared unannounced and got the last of the document signatures done and our original driver had vanished with his van too.

 

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THE NEW GUIDE WAS UNINFORMATIVE

Immigration booths opened at 6:10 am and one by one we checked out of Thailand.

After checking out we had to wait for others tour companies to come through before we could cross the bridge to Loas, which annoyed many people in my group as we were first on the scene but had to wait until the last group, who were not with us, were stamped out before our group could continue on.

The whole process was looking unorganized and not thought through very well and we had to sit and watch many people not with tour groups proceed quickly past us to the next point.

 

 

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CROSSING FRIENDSHIP BRIDGE

6:40 we crossed Friendship Bridge and passports were handed to Loas immigration, many visa’s were processed and the waiting time dragged on.

It seemed we were no longer being processed as a group from van 1, our van, but randomly from the mass of 10 or so mini vans, and somehow we ended up being last again.

Those who did not arrive with a  tour company group passed through immigration very quickly, while we were left to wonder what was going on, as there was no sign of our guides and no information was given to anybody.

At 8 am our new lady guide finally showed up again and casually told a couple of us to follow, she made no effort to make sure everyone in our group was accounted for and her reluctance to answer question and give basic information was deplorable and unprofessional, anyone could imagine this was her first day on the job with no previous experience.

 

TROUBLE AT THE THAI EMBASSY

At last we were moved to a new Laos vehicle and driver, we made our way to the Thai embassy were we had to make an appearance for some reason as the passports were handed to the officials, again we were not told anything, simply told to get out of the car and we were herded into the Embassy grounds and through one of the buildings and back into the car without stopping.

Everybody was very annoyed by this point and an argument broke out when one of the guy’s from my group asked if the visa he was getting was the one he paid for, just as well he did, as a mistake had been made, and now he had to pay again to correct the mistake, which made him furious and he became very vocal about the guides incompetence. Next day, he was reimbursed.

 

ARRIVING AT THE HOTEL DAOKHAM

At 9 am we made our way to the Hotel Dao Kham, but on arrival was informed the rooms were not ready, we were asked to please go eat something while the rooms were being serviced.

A buffet breakfast was served, fried eggs, hotdogs, toast and Thai food, fruit juice, tea and coffee were available, and everyone started to relax a little now.

 

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AFTER BREAKFAST

After we had finished eating, we waited in the beautiful lobby of the hotel waiting for the rooms to become available, wi -fi passwords were handed out and I keyed in my user name and password, but there was no internet connection, told the concierge about the internet problem, and he told me to wait 10 mins and try again, 10 mins passed and still no internet, at this point I was too tired to care anymore.

 

THE ROOM

Room keys were finally handed out and I was pleasantly surprised when I entered the room, it was very large, inviting and spacious, I unpacked and had a shower and a sleep.

Room was very comfortable and good size, TV, A/C, hot water, Wi/Fi, fridge and mini bar, large sliding windows with a view which allow lots of natural light into the room if you wanted it.

 

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IN THE AFTERNOON

Upon waking I turned on the TV and found about 80 channels available but mostly Thai and about 15 English speaking channels available.

I checked for messages on my smart Phone but still no internet, I made my way downstairs and asked at reception when the internet would be available, the manager overheard me say that there was no internet from 9 am until now at 4 pm, she wasn’t happy and instructed staff to reboot the router and hey presto, I had a internet connection which was very fast.

 

NIGHT TIME ENTERTAINMENT

Evening meal was also provided between 6 pm – 7pm in the dining room as well as one drink of your choice. Later management kindly provided transport free of charge for a small group of us who wanted to venture out into Vientiane night life, others went to the karaoke bar and later to the Gold Star disco on the far side of the hotel.

 

THE NEXT DAY

Breakfast was again provided the next morning between the hours of 7 – 11 am and was the same menu as the previous day.

Room check out time was 11 am.

The minibus was scheduled to leave the hotel at 12:30 so we waited in the Lobby for 1 ½ hrs and amused ourselves as best we could.

 

HOTEL RATES

Hotel Dao Kham was very nice hotel to stay at and staff where very helpful, friendly and accommodating, so I inquired at reception as to how much the rooms where at a daily rate –

Low season room 1 person – 1000b, 2 people 1200 Baht

High season room 1 person  – 1300b, 2 people 1500 Baht

 

THE TRIP BACK TO THAILAND

I would like to say that that the Loas side of the trip was better organized than the previous day, but it was actually worse. First they tried to spit everyone up in the hotel parking lot and mix the groups up in different minivans which didn’t go down well.

Then, again, there was no information given as to what was to happen in the next couple of hours, we just seemed to be driving aimlessly around Vientiane for some reason, most likely killing time,

I asked “are we were going to the Embassy to get our passports?”

“ No” was the answer.

“Where are we going?” I asked,

“shopping!”

My companions and I all looked at each other a bit bewildered,

“shopping?” I asked again,

“yes shopping”

I asked if “are we were going shopping at the border crossing?”

“ yes.”

SO HELPFUL.

 

WHERE IS MY PASSPORT?

When we arrived at the Loas immigration at

1:20 pm, we were told to go shopping for ½ an hour while the passports arrived, at

2:15 pm, we were the only group left who had not got their passports and had proceeded to the Thai immigration check in point.

At 2:20 pm, we were told to pass through Loas immigration without passports, don’t ask me how!

At 2:30 we crossed the bridge by bus and waited near the Thai Immigration booths waiting for our passports to come and check into Thailand.

2:45, the lady guide from Loas got of a bus and came running over to us in a panic, handing out passports and pushing us to the booths without even letting us check that we even had visa’s,

I gave my passport to the customs officer not knowing if I had a visa, he stamped my book and then I could see what I had after he gave it back to me, I was a relief to see I had the visa I had paid for.

3:15 pm, we were back in the minivan, everyone had been processed and we were heading back to Pattaya.

11:40 pm, we arrived in Pattaya.

 

SUMMARY
      1. Trip to Knong Khai was good and quick.
      2. Very long waiting periods at the borders.
      3. Very bad communication and organization from the Laos guides.
      4. Hotel in Loas was very good, clean and comfortable, food was also good.
      5. Hotel was a long way from tourist area of Vientiane, about 4 km.
      6. Visa collection was very poor by Laos guide and very late.
      7. Trip back to Pattaya was also good and quick

Rating – 6 ½  out of 10

 

 

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