Traveling Vietnam from Laos: Where and how across the border?

Embarking on a journey from Laos to Vietnam opens up a world of cultural richness, scenic beauty, and historical wonders. The transition between these two Southeast Asian countries is an adventure in itself, offering diverse landscapes, vibrant cities, and warm hospitality along the way. In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the various ways you can cross the border from Laos to Vietnam, exploring the intricacies of each mode of transport and providing essential tips for a seamless travel experience.

Vietnam – Laos Border Crossing

When venturing from Laos to Vietnam, one of the primary considerations is choosing the most suitable border crossing point. The border between these two nations spans over 2,100 kilometers, offering several entry points for travelers. Some of the key border crossings include:

  1. Nam Can Border Crossing: Located in Nghe An Province, this crossing connects Laos’ Xieng Khouang Province with Vietnam. It’s a popular choice for those traveling between the two countries by road.
  2. Cau Treo Border Crossing: Situated near the town of Lak Sao in Laos and Ha Tinh Province in Vietnam, this crossing is known for its picturesque surroundings and relatively smooth immigration procedures.
  1. Lao Bao Border Crossing: Found in Quang Tri Province, this crossing links Laos’ Savannakhet Province with Vietnam. It’s a crucial entry point for travelers moving between the two countries.

How do you cross the border?

Crossing the border from Laos to Vietnam involves navigating through immigration checkpoints, customs procedures, and transportation options. Here are some essential steps to keep in mind when crossing the border:

  • Ensure your travel documents, including passports and visas, are up to date and valid for entry into Vietnam.
  • Be prepared for potential language barriers at border checkpoints, and consider carrying a basic Vietnamese phrasebook or translation app.
  • Familiarize yourself with the specific border crossing regulations and requirements, such as visa-on-arrival facilities or visa exemptions for certain nationalities.

To facilitate a smooth border crossing experience, it’s advisable to arrive during non-peak hours to avoid long queues and delays. Additionally, staying informed about any recent changes in border policies can help you plan your journey more effectively.

Travel from Laos to Vietnam via plane

For travelers seeking a swift and convenient way to reach Vietnam from Laos, air travel presents an attractive option. Several airlines operate flights between major cities in Laos, such as Vientiane and Luang Prabang, and key destinations in Vietnam, including Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Da Nang.

Flight Options from Laos to Vietnam

Here are some popular flight routes connecting Laos and Vietnam:

AirlineDeparture CityArrival CityFlight Duration
Lao AirlinesVientianeHanoi1h 30m
Vietnam AirlinesLuang PrabangHo Chi Minh City2h 15m
VietJet AirPakseDa Nang2h 45m

Flying from Laos to Vietnam offers the advantage of saving time and enjoying aerial views of the stunning landscapes below. However, it’s important to book your flights in advance to secure the best deals and ensure availability, especially during peak travel seasons.

Popular bus routes from Laos to Vietnam via bus

Traveling by bus from Laos to Vietnam provides a budget-friendly and immersive way to experience the diverse scenery and local culture along the route. Several bus companies offer cross-border services, connecting major cities in Laos with various destinations in Vietnam.

Bus Operators and Routes

Here are some popular bus routes for traveling from Laos to Vietnam:

  1. Vientiane to Hanoi: This route is serviced by multiple bus companies, offering comfortable overnight journeys between the capital cities of Laos and Vietnam.
  1. Luang Prabang to Hue: Traveling from the ancient city of Luang Prabang in Laos to the historic city of Hue in Vietnam provides a scenic and culturally enriching bus journey.
  1. Pakse to Ho Chi Minh City: Bus services between Pakse in southern Laos and bustling Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam cater to travelers looking to explore urban hubs and rural landscapes along the way.

Tips for Bus Travelers

  • Pack light and carry essentials such as water, snacks, and entertainment for long bus rides.
  • Check the departure schedules and ticket prices in advance to plan your journey efficiently.
  • Be prepared for varying road conditions and border crossing procedures, which may require patience and flexibility.

Traveling by bus offers a unique opportunity to interact with locals, witness the changing landscapes, and immerse yourself in the authentic charm of both Laos and Vietnam.

A few notes for travelers going to Vietnam from Laos

Before embarking on your trip from Laos to Vietnam, here are some additional tips to enhance your travel experience:

  • Currency Exchange: It’s advisable to exchange currency before crossing the border to ensure you have sufficient cash in both Laotian kip and Vietnamese dong.
  • Health Precautions: Consider getting vaccinated against common illnesses prevalent in the region and carry necessary medications for any pre-existing conditions.
  • Cultural Etiquette: Familiarize yourself with the cultural norms and traditions of Vietnam to show respect to the local population and avoid unintentional misunderstandings.

By staying informed, prepared, and open to new experiences, you can make the most of your journey from Laos to Vietnam and create lasting memories along the way.


Embarking on a journey from Laos to Vietnam is a captivating experience that unveils the rich tapestry of Southeast Asian landscapes, cultures, and traditions. Whether you choose to fly between the two countries for convenience or opt for a bus adventure to savor the scenic beauty en route, each mode of transport offers its own set of delights and discoveries.

As you navigate the border crossings, immerse yourself in the diverse landscapes, flavors, and histories that define Laos and Vietnam. By planning ahead, respecting local customs, and embracing the spirit of exploration, you can embark on a memorable travel odyssey that bridges the gap between these two enchanting nations.