Similar changes have already been implemented in other regions with good results. Although these changes does not affect where and how you apply, there are some key notes you should consider when you apply:
- Where to apply?
As before, all applicants in Vietnam must meet and apply in person at one of VFS Global application centers in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City. VFS Global will ensure that the applications are sent to Bangkok for further processing. You will also still be able to collect the decision documents at VFS Global.
This means that you can no longer hand in an application, passport or documents to the Norwegian Embassy in Hanoi. From the 6th of August, there is no longer a Visa Section at the Embassy in Hanoi.
- Introduction of a courier fee
As before, there will be an application fee payable online when you register your application in the Application Portal Norway, and a service fee (20 euros) charged by VFS Global.
What is new is that applications submitted in Vietnam will also be subject to a courier fee (11.5 euros) to cover transportation of the application documents between the visa application centers in Vietnam and the Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand. These fees are payable to VFS Global on your application day.
- Extended waiting time for Schengen visa to Norway
The processing time for Schengen visas to Norway is normally up to 15 days from the date the application is received at the Embassy in Bangkok. Please take note that you should account for an additional 4-6 days for sending the application documents between the VFS application center in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok, and back. We highly recommend that you apply well in advance, at least 4 weeks prior to your planned trip. You may apply 3 months in advance of your planned travel!
- Ongoing applications
Applications for Schengen visa submitted prior to the 6th of August 2019 will be processed and finalized by the Embassy in Hanoi.
If you have applied for a residence permit prior to the 6th of August 2019, you will be notified about the decision either by the VFS application center or by the Hub Embassy in Bangkok.
If you have given someone Power of attorney to represent you in your case, the notification will be sent to the person you have authorized.
VFS will forward the query to the Embassy in Bangkok if deemed necessary. Please note that the email address Visum.email@example.com will no longer exist from the 6th of August.
For more information, please visit the Portal of the Embassy in Hanoi https://www.norway.no/en/vietnam/services-info/visitors-visa-res-permit/
For detailed information on procedures, regulations, case handling times etc., please see the user-friendly website of the Directorate of Immigration in Norway, https://www.udi.no/en/
We wish you good luck with future visa and residence permit applications to Norway!
In this regard, the Embassy wants to emphasize that the transfer of the visa processing to Bangkok from Hanoi will not affect the other activities of the Embassy in Vietnam and Lao PDR.