Eli Orzessek finds the answers to your travel questions.

I have booked a cruise for my husband and myself out of Singapore next May.

There are opportunities for day visits in Cambodia, Vietnam, Bali and Thailand. I have received an email from the cruise company saying visas are required for Cambodia and Vietnam. The company says these visas can be acquired on board the ship (at a price that seems, to me, to be quite high). I have tried to research online about getting these in advance, but just seem to get companies that get the visas for you (again, at a price).

Do you know whether I can get these directly myself? My husband has a NZ passport, but I have both NZ and UK passports (not sure if same rules apply for NZ and UK passports).

I visited Thailand and Bali some years ago, and don't think visas are required for these.

I would be grateful for any information you can provide.
Iris Jillett

Honestly, sometimes there's nothing more complicated than getting your head around official embassy websites - I've said it before, but many of them look straight out of 1998 and anything but official.

But after a lot of digging around online and a phone call, I have some answers for you.

Vietnam is easy, as I've done it myself. For New Zealand passport holders, getting a visa in advance costs $120 for a one month single-entry visa. To get it, you'll need to go to visa.mofa.gov.vn - which is the only legitimate website authorised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam - and fill out the application form, which you then print and send to the embassy in Wellington with your passport (valid for at least one month after the visa expiration date or six months for some airlines) and a cheque. I received my passport with visa back within the week.


While you might have read about the cheaper Vietnam "visa on arrival", it is only available if you're entering by air.

However, as a British passport holder, you may not need a visa. Until June 30, 2018, "British Citizen" passport holders travelling for tourism or business can enter Vietnam for a maximum of 15 days (inclusive of dates of entry and exit) without a visa.

But if you have a different type of British nationality - say "British national (overseas)" - then you will need to sort out a visa.

To get a visa in advance for Cambodia, your passport will need to travel a little further abroad, as the embassy is in Canberra.

You'll need to complete the visa application form (found at embassyofcambodia.org.nz/visaregulation.html) and submit it to the embassy with a passport-sized photograph, your passport with minimum six months' validity and the visa fee of A$50 in cash or bank/company cheque or money order, made payable to the Royal Embassy of Cambodia.

Let us know how these prices compare to sorting your visas out on board.

Email your questions to askaway@nzherald.co.nz
Eli cannot answer all questions and cannot correspond with readers.