Trip to Laos

Getting there via its neighboring countries -
Flight, Train, Bus and Boat information

Planning a trip to Laos? Don't stress yourself out, it is not as complicated as you may think to get there no matter where you are in the world.

Although there are no direct flights from USA, Europe or some other parts of the world, you can still fly into Laos via its neighboring countries (Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and China). And now AirAsia Malaysia has cheap flights to Laos direct from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The most convenient and popular way of getting to Laos is to get to Thailand and then get a flight from Thailand, or take a bus or a train to Laos depending on where you depart and which parts of Laos you plan to arrive in, as well as your personal travel budget.

Here is complete information on all the routes plus information about visa for Laos and Thailand-Laos border crossing procedures to help you make the best informed decision for your vacation in Laos.

From Thailand

Regular air services link many towns in Thailand to major cities of Laos. Thai Airways International and Lao Airlines have several daily flights between Bangkok and Vientiane Capital, so it is possible to make a return trip in a day. From Bangkok you can also fly to Luang Prabang, Savanakhet and Pakse. There are also flights from Chiangmai to Luang Prabang and Vientiane.

Overland (or Mekong river) border crossing between Thailand and Laos can be done at several points from the north through out the south, although not all check points issue Lao visa on arrival.

Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge No.1
The Lao-Thai border crossing at the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge #1

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From Cambodia

If a Cambodia-Laos route is in your travel itinerary, I'd recommend getting a flight to Laos from Phnom Penh or Siem Reap.

It is possible to do overland border crossing from Cambodia to Laos (or vice versa). Even though many travelers who had made their trips to Laos that way reported that crossing Cambodia-Laos border is a bit tricky, it is apparently OK now and there is a new road too.

While there are no bus or train services between the two countries at present, the two governments have recently reached an agreement to allow cross-border bus services to operate in a bid to boost tourism and trade between the two neighboring countries. So... stay touned for updates

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From Vietnam


You can make your trip to Laos fast and convenient by flying. Lao Airlines and Vietnam Airlines provide direct daily flights to Laos from Vietnam (Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City).

If time is not an issue and/or if you like natural scenery, do overland trip to Laos is truly an attraction on its own though it's a bit adventurous and takes a long time. Daily bus services are available which run to and from many places in Vietnam and Laos.

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From China

The easiest way to get to Laos from China is by air. There are direct flights from China (Kunming) to Laos (Vientiane Capital) several times per week.

It is also possible to travel to Laos from China by road or water at few China-Laos border crossing points, though not all can arrange Laos visa on arrival.

From Myanmar

At present getting to Laos from Myanmar is not as easy because there is no direct flight, and no international overland border checkpoint. If you need to make a trip to Laos by air from Myanmar, you will need to get to Thailand, either Bangkok or Chiang Mai, then get a flight to Laos.

Overland traveling between Myanmar and Laos is currently not possible for foreigners (foreigners cannot legally cross the Laos/Myanmar border). Hopefully that will change soon as Laos and Myanmar have agreed to set up border check points on each side to develop cross-border tourism. However, the date of opening for these checkpoints is still under negotiation.

Although there are no direct ways to get to Laos from many parts of the world, air travel to the country can easily be done through Bangkok, one of the major Asia hubs. If you can make your way to Bangkok, then you are almost there.

Enjoy your trip to Laos!


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