Ok, so you’ve decided to visit the beautiful Kingdom of Wonder, and you’re confused as to how the hell you should get started.
Well, the first thing will be to obtain a visa and there are several visa’s available. Like the Religious worker visa’s, student visa’s, even a Diplomatic visa. We will, however, narrow this down to the most common visa’s needed to visit, or live in Cambodia for an extended period.
Tourist (T) visa
First of all, if you’re just a tourist who will be visiting Cambodia only for up to a 60 day period, you would only need to obtain the standard tourist (T) visa.
The 30 day Tourist visa, like most others, can be obtained online (e-visa) or from a Cambodian Embassy (providing there is one in your country; see here.) The cost for an electronic Tourist visa is $37 (includes processing fee,) but for most nationalities a visa can be obtained on arrival, which is what we would recommend. A Tourist visa on arrival will cost $30, and is available at most land crossings (see here,) and one of the two international airports, at Siem Reap or Phnom Pehn.
Once that first visa is close to expiring, you can then extend it officially through the immigration office, or unofficially through one of the many travel agents one time only for an extra 30 days and at the cost of $45. The Tourist visa is single entry only, and after the second month you would then have to leave the country, re-entering on a new tourist visa.
If you’re planning on staying longer than a 60 day period, you will need to obtain an Ordinary (E) visa (not to be confused with the electronic (e-)visa.)
Formally the Business visa, the Ordinary (E) visa, like the Tourist visa, is valid for 30 days only but can be extended indefinitely, without leaving the country. Extensions are available for 1, 3, 6, and 12 months at a time, with the 6 and 12 month visa’s being on a multiple entry basis. The cost of an Ordinary visa on arrival is $35, and can also be obtained through most land crossings (see here) and both international airports. The lengthier your stay, the costlier the visa with the cost of an extension varying depending on where you obtain it. As with the Tourist visa, this means whether you extend officially through the immigration office, which involves a lot of paper work, or unofficially through one of the many travel agents in Cambodia.
For all visa requests, a passport with at least 6 months validity and a blank page is required, along with a recent passport photo. However, don’t worry if you have no chance to get yourself a photo, as they can provide one for a small cost of $2 on top of your visa fee.
Overstaying, whether you hold a Tourist visa or Ordinary visa you will incur a hefty $5 fine for every day you are in the country without a valid visa. We don’t advise ever overstaying on your visa, but often if you only need an extra couple of days then it will, obviously, be cheaper to do this than extend your visa. If you do overstay, you will have to pay the charges when you leave the country, whether over land or by plane.