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Cambodia - Visa

Visas are no barrier to living in Cambodia. The situation could change, however, if only because of the rapid political and economic developments underway in the country.

Most visitors to Cambodia will obtain a 30-day tourist visa for a cost of US$20 (A$22). These can be obtained on arrival at Phnom Penh and Siem Reap airports and at land borders. One passport-sized photo is required. Make sure you have several photographs anyway and make sure you have foreign currency, preferably US dollars.  

With the tourist visa you are allowed to extend your stay once, for an extra 30 days at a cost of around US$40 (A$48).  

If you intend staying longer, though, it is best to apply for an ‘ordinary visa’, which is often referred to as a ‘business visa’. Like a tourist visa, this ordinary visa is valid for 30 days but at a cost of US$25 (A$27). The ‘ordinary visa’, though, can be extended indefinitely. It also can be acquired on arrival.

You can extend your stay from within the country, so there’s no need to leave. You have the option to extend for one, three, six or twelve months. The one- and three-month options will only get a single entry visa, which means that if you leave the country, you’ll need to get a new visa when you return.

It is much more convenient to get either a six-month or twelve-month extension, as they will both give you multiple entries. This means you can leave and return as often as you want to, on the same visa. The fee for a year-long multiple entry extension is US$280 (A$300). Both types of extensions take a day or two to process and are best handled through agents.

Alan Parkhurst, editor of the Phnom Penh Post, said: ‘I just pay an agent US$300 ($A322) a year and I get a new visa. You can do it through any travel agent here. I know people who have been here for years and have never left the country. Cambodia is the easiest place in Southeast Asia to stay long-term’.

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