Andreas shares his Pattaya Laos Visa Run story with you on this page.
Most people hire a company to do it for them.
You can also do it by yourself and at your own pace.
In fact you can tour the northeastern part of Thailand first before you decide to head out to Laos.
While in Laos you can also spend some time in that country for yourself.
This is more enjoyable than going with a quick come-and-go visa company.
So what would you need to bring with you?
Get to Nongkhai first. You first need to get to Nongkhai by bus.
I left the Mekong Guesthouse in Nong Khai at 5:45 and a Thai who was just going to work took me to the Thai border checkpoint for 30 Baht. It's maybe a 15 minute ride.
Before you reach the border make sure you have everything you need.
It is a good idea to come well prepared.
You can download the visa application below. Fill out the application,
glue 2 photos on, and sign. You will need an additional photo when you
enter Laos at the checkpoint.
What You Need for your Pattaya Laos Visa Run.
Once at the border you will leave Thailand. You just walk through Immigration and they check your passport. Hopefully you didn't overstay since you will have to pay 500 baht for each day overstayed or 20,000 baht maximum.
You then pay 20 Baht for a red colored bus that will take you to the Laotian border. I also bought a map of Vientiane at the counter for 25 baht.
At the border you will have to fill out the visa application and pay for the Laos visa. If you pay in Baht this will be 1340 Baht.
It's actually 1300 baht but you have to pay $1 overtime if you arrive between 6-8 am in the morning.
Overtime charge applies for Saturdays and Sundays from 4 - 10 pm, and Mondays through Fridays from 6-8 am
I believe the 1 dollar is the 40 Baht. Make sure you have exact change because they probably won't give you any change back and I wouldn't want to argue with those guys over a few baht. It is a good idea to bring small bank notes in Thai Baht for your trip anyways.
You also will need 1 passport photo to submit with the Laos visa application. At 6:30 they gave me my passport and you pretty much just walk through the Laotian border checkpoint.
I hired one of those guys at the Laotian border before you enter Laos. Those guys will approach you there and I am glad I hired him.
He charged me 200 baht for taking me to the Thai embassy, He waited at the embassy for me and then took me to my Guesthouse in Vientiane. All that in an air-con car, not a Tuk Tuk.
It's a good idea to have the same driver pick you up the next day to
take you to the embassy and back to the border.
A Tuk Tuk (jumbo) will charge you at least 100 Baht to take you to the embassy only.
I got to the embassy at 7:30 am and there were maybe 25 people waiting for the embassy to open. The Thai Embassy opens at 8:30 am - 12 pm and reopens at 1 pm - 3 pm for visa collection, Monday through Friday. Best days to apply for a visa are Monday through Thursday, unless you want to spend the weekend in Vientiane since there is no visa collection on Saturdays.
I was fortunate enough to get number 6 and had a couple of minutes to fill out my visa application and glue my pretty photos on the application and submit the paperwork.
I submitted an application for a tourist visa and wrote x 2 (double entry) next to the check box. Also where it asks how long you are going to stay in Thailand, I wrote 2x60 days / 120 days.
Next, I went to pay in the adjacent building. You wait until they call your number. Fee for my visa was 2000 Baht. I left at 9:15 with my receipt. The driver took me to my Guesthouse and I checked in.
If you didn't bring Kip (Laotian money) you may want to exchange some in Vientiane. There are banks and money changers.
You can also rent a motorbike for around $10 or 350 Baht and explore Vientiane. Bicycles are for rent too at some places. You will find them when you walk around in the heat.
The driver picked me up at noon and I arrived at the embassy at 12:15 p.m. Embassy opens at 1 p.m. There were maybe 10 people before me. You go inside and take a number and proceed to the cashier. I was out of the embassy by 1:15.
Driver took me back to the border and I paid him 200 Baht. At the border fill out the arrival card and proceed to enter Thailand. 5 minutes.
Pay for a bus ticket to Nong Khai (40 Baht or 400 Kip). The blue bus will take you to NongKhai and drop you off at the bridge. Take a Tuk Tuk for 40 Baht to the Bus station.
I bought a ticket for the 3:30 pm bus which gave me enough time to eat lunch. Outside the bus station is a 407 office which is selling the tickets.
The bus arrives at 5 pm in Udon Thani and 8:30 in Khon Kaen. The bus arrived in Pattaya at 4:30 in the morning and your Pattaya Laos Visa Run is over.
I'm sure you'll enjoy your own Pattaya Laos Visa run! ;-)