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How to Get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia?

March 15, 2024

If you’re planning a trip to Southeast Asia, chances are you’ll want to visit both Cambodia and Vietnam. These two neighboring countries offer a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty that make them popular destinations for travelers. One of the most common routes between these two countries is from Cambodia’s capital city, Phnom Penh, to Vietnam’s bustling metropolis, Ho Chi Minh City (formerly known as Saigon). In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive guide on how to get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia, including border crossings, visa information, and transportation options.

Buses from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh

Buses from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh

Border Crossings: A Comprehensive Overview

Before discussing the various ways to get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia, it’s important to understand the different border crossings between the two countries. There are four main border crossings that connect Cambodia and Vietnam:

  • Bavet/Moc Bai: This is the most popular border crossing for travelers going from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City. It is located in the Svay Rieng province in Cambodia and Tay Ninh province in Vietnam.
  • Kaam Samnor/Ving Xuong: This border crossing connects Cambodia’s Kandal province with Vietnam’s An Giang province. It is a popular option for those traveling from Phnom Penh to Chau Doc in Vietnam.
  • Prek Chak/Ha Tien (Xa Xia): Located in Kampot province in Cambodia and Ha Tien province in Vietnam, this border crossing is often used by travelers going from Kampot or Kep to Ha Tien or Rach Gia in Vietnam.
  • Oyadav/Le Thanh: This is the least used border crossing between Cambodia and Vietnam, connecting Ratanakiri province in Cambodia with Gia Lai province in Vietnam.

It’s important to note that not all of these border crossings are open to foreigners, and some may require special permits or visas. It’s best to check with your embassy or travel agency before planning your trip.

Visa Information: Essential Requirements and Regulations

Before traveling from Cambodia to Vietnam, it’s important to understand the visa requirements for both countries. Citizens of most countries will need a visa to enter Vietnam, while citizens of certain countries are exempt from needing a visa for stays of up to 45 days. These exemptions include citizens of ASEAN countries, South Korea, Japan, Russia, and several European countries.

For those who do need a visa, there are two main options: applying for a visa in advance or obtaining a visa on arrival. The latter option is only available for air travel and requires an approval letter from a travel agency or sponsor in Vietnam. It’s important to note that this process can be time-consuming and may not always be reliable, so it’s recommended to obtain a visa in advance if possible.

Cambodia also requires a visa for most foreign visitors, which can be obtained upon arrival at the airport or at land border crossings. However, it’s important to have the necessary documents and fees ready, as well as a passport-sized photo. It’s also possible to apply for an e-visa in advance, which allows for faster processing and avoids potential scams at the border.

How to Get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia?

Now that we’ve covered the basics of border crossings and visa requirements, let’s explore the different ways to get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia.

1. Flight from Siem Reap/ Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City

The most convenient and fastest way to get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia is by flying. There are daily flights from both Siem Reap and Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City, with multiple airlines offering this route. The flight time is approximately one hour, making it a quick and hassle-free option for travelers.

The main airlines that operate flights between Cambodia and Vietnam are Cambodia Angkor Air, Vietnam Airlines, and Vietjet Air. Prices can vary depending on the season and availability, but generally range from $100 to $200 for a round-trip ticket. It’s recommended to book in advance to secure the best deals.

2. Get to Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia by Bus

For budget travelers or those looking for a more adventurous journey, taking a bus from Cambodia to Ho Chi Minh City is a popular option. There are several bus companies that offer this route, with departures from Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and other major cities in Cambodia.

The most popular bus company is Giant Ibis, which offers comfortable and reliable buses with air conditioning, Wi-Fi, and onboard toilets. The journey from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City takes around six hours, while the trip from Siem Reap can take up to 12 hours. Prices range from $15 to $25, depending on the departure point and type of bus.

Another option is to take a local bus, which is significantly cheaper but may not be as comfortable or reliable. These buses can be found at the central bus stations in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap and usually cost less than $10 for a one-way ticket.

3. Get to Can Tho from Phnom Penh by Boat

For a unique and scenic journey, it’s possible to travel from Phnom Penh to Can Tho in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam by boat. This option is only available during the dry season (from November to May) when the water levels in the Mekong River are high enough for boats to navigate.

The journey takes around eight hours and includes a stop at the border crossing in Kaam Samnor/Ving Xuong. From there, travelers will continue on to Chau Doc and then take a bus or taxi to Can Tho. The boat ride is a great way to experience the beauty of the Mekong Delta and see local life along the river. Prices range from $25 to $35, depending on the type of boat and services included.

Conclusion

Traveling from Cambodia to Ho Chi Minh City is a relatively easy and straightforward process, with several options available for different budgets and preferences. Whether you choose to fly, take a bus, or embark on a boat journey, you’ll be able to experience the unique cultures and landscapes of both countries. Just make sure to plan ahead and have all the necessary documents and information before embarking on your trip. Happy travels!

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