Myanmar Visa: Visa on arrival or E-Visa

How to get a visa for Myanmar, including its validity and rough costs.

Myanmar Visa on Arrival

A few years ago, getting a visa on arrival was possible, but nowadays, the Burmese government seemed to have taken this away except for a few nationalities. If you are from any of the neighboring ASEA nations (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Philippines, Thailand, or Vietnam), you are able to enter and get a visa on arrival, allowing you to travel freely within the country.
For those who are not ASEAN residents and who wish to go to Myanmar, you have two options. You can either enter the country by applying in a designated Myanmar embassy or through their Electronic Visa application.

Myanmar eVisa

For those applying electronically, while there are a few travel agents who claim that they can arrange this for you, you can also visit the Ministry of Immigration’s website to apply for your own. The downside is that it is often unreliable and is only slowly making strides.
As of April 2018, they announced that they are now able to expedited services, allowing you to apply for a regular Tourist Visa with results being e-mailed to you within 24 hours. As this is all relatively new, we are still waiting on feedback from people who have tried this service themselves.
Prior to applying though, the e-visa has a few rules to abide by:
Currently, passengers with eVisa are only permitted to enter via following ports:

  • Yangon International Airport
  • Mandalay International Airport
  • Nay Pyi Taw International Airport
  • Tachileik Land Border Checkpoint
  • Myawaddy Land Border Checkpoint
  • Kawthaung Land Border Checkpoint

If you are traveling to Myanmar via boat, you will need to secure a visa beforehand as electronic visas are not honored in any of the seaports. You can check the rest of their rules and regulations in applying for a eVisa for Myanmar here.

Myanmar Visa Validity & Cost

It is important to note that the validity of the eVisa approval letter is 90 days from the issued date. If it is expired, your entry will be denied. Your visa is valid for 28 days, plus the chance to extend for another 14, giving you a total of 42 days.
You will also need to have the information of where you are staying in Myanmar as you are only allowed to stay in registered hotels, motels, inns, guest house and resort during your stay in Myanmar.
Myanmar eVisa Cost: $56 (as of May 2018) for updated prices, please check the website linked above.

Myanmar Visa from an Embassy

Apart from the eVisa, a more reliable option on how to get a visa for Myanmar is by applying in your nearest Burmese/ Myanmar consulate. If you’re already in Asia, the most convenient one is located in Bangkok.
Here, you can get a visa in 1-2 days or they also have an express, same day service which is a lot more expensive. It is important to go here ahead of time as their visa center is only open from 9am-12pm. The lines can get pretty long so make sure you go early. When we were living in Thailand, we learned from experience that it is best to check government websites ahead of time in case they were closed for a public holiday!

Documents for Myanmar Visa

In order to get your visa from the nearest consulate, you will need two passport photos, cash, and a photocopy of the photo/personal details page of your passport. If you are having your visa expedited, you need to show your plane ticket to Myanmar. Sometimes, they will also ask for the name of your guesthouse or hotel so keep this in mind.