Visa run to Vientiane Laos for Non-Immigrant ED Visa


Thai Consulate Vientiane Laos Visa Run Education Visa Tourist VisaSo you have been staying in Thailand for some time, and your current Visa is about to expire after you have done a 30 day extension at Thai Immigration.

What do you do now? You, like me, obviously want to stay in Thailand as you have made many new friends, and you haven’t finished exploring the beautiful country that is on offer. Well you have the obvious option to join one of the many tour’s targeted at Visa runs from many of the main places like Bangkok, Chiang Mai or Phuket. But I am here to tell you about the self drive Visa run option that I recently embarked on.

Thailand-Immigration-Nong-Khai-I own a motorcycle in Thailand, a ‘big bike’, a 650cc Kawasaki Versys which I have been putting on a vast amount of kilometers touring the country. So why not do a ride to Laos, more specifically to Vientiane to visit the Thai Consulate.

Crossing the border from Nong Khai into Vientiane is pretty straight forward, though a small amount of prior work is needed. You will need your green book of ownership, or a letter from the owner stating you can take their bike out of the country, a translation to English also, which is available at government office for 20THB, and after that you are pretty much set to cross the border.

Thailand-Immigration-Nong-Khai-When you reach the border at Nong Khai, you will park your vehicle, and head for the Immigration section, where you will fill in your forms to personally leave Thailand. Once this has been processed it’s a matter of organising your bike/car to leave. Head over to the central building and pick up the forms there for temporary export from Thailand and fill out. They will stamp these and take a fee. Make sure you keep this form as you will need it when you come back through.

After doing all this, it’s time to cross the bridge and go through the process at Vientiane side check point. There in an insurance company available at this check point, where you will need to buy compulsory 3rd party insurance for Laos. Now this is all you can buy, you cannot get theft etc which is something definitely worth considering if your making the trip. The CTP is 120THB for 7 days.

Visa on arrival is available for Laos so also no real issues there. One thing worth noting which may be obvious to some, is that they drive on the right side of the road in Laos. This can be somewhat of a new experience for some and can throw you when you are exiting driveways or streets so keep your wits about you.

The traffic in Laos is nowhere near as bad as Thailand, but in saying that the roads are shot to crap. Expect wheel swallowing pot holes, gravel, dirt, dust, animals, buses, tractors, cars, bikes, everything and anything is on the roads over there but personally I find this a huge appeal for the country.

Van Vieng River KAwasaki Versys I am using AIS as my mobile phone carrier in Thailand, and once you cross the border this no longer exists, not even roaming. This means any plans you made on your Google GPS app will no longer be available, but you can download maps to your phone prior and still have your GPS track you with no problems, just no planing on the maps without internet.

My plans tended to be working out routes when WIFI was available at hotels or restaurants, then marking them on the maps and using it that way. Of course you could buy a dedicated GPS but hey some of us are taking these adventures with some types of budgets so making do is sometimes what is needed.

The effort required to cross the border is well worth it, having your own transport when exploring a neighboring country is awesome and as you can see from the video below, it truly makes for wonderful memories.


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