Moving to Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Phnom Penh has an expanding population of expats, mostly are workers employed in NGOs and international organisations. As Cambodia continues to open its doors to the world after decades of political upheavals, the opportunities for foreign investors and workers are also on the rise. The quality of living has significantly improved in recent years – housing and education are made accessible to more Cambodians, more telecommunications infrastructure is in the pipeline and the economy is striving to diversify in efforts to maintain strong economic growth.
Cambodia, a former French colony, has incorporated Western influences into its customs and traditions so it’s not too difficult for expats from Europe to adjust to daily living. Help is available – whether from your embassy, the local government or private consultants – whenever you need one.
If you are bringing your pet dog or cat to Phnom Penh, you need to secure several requirements under Cambodia’s rules on importation. Pet owners are mandated to have their animals identified through an ISO-compliant microchip. A Rabies Vaccination Certificate and a Vet Health Certificate should be ready at the port of entry. A copy of the owner’s passport and a photograph of the owner and the pet are also required.
Cambodia reserves the right to quarantine animals unless they were vaccinated for rabies 30 days to 12 months prior export. Additionally, cats must be inoculated against Calicivirus, Herpesvirus, Panleukopenia and dogs should have had Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvo vaccines. If you are not travelling on the same plane with your pets, you need to secure an import permit for the animals entering the country as air cargo.
Visa application process
Visa applicants who sent applications via mail can expect their visas within three weeks. This depends on the service expectation at the embassy or consulate abroad. For instance, the Cambodian Embassy in Washington D.C. processes visa applications within five business days. E-visa applicants can receive their visas after three business days.
You may apply for the visas in person or via mail by submitting the following documentary requirements:
- A completed application form
- One passport-sized photograph (2×2)
- Passport, valid for at least six months
- For tourist e-visas, the photograph must be in digital format (JPEG or PNG) and a valid credit card (Visa or Mastercard) must be submitted
- For applications via mail, include a self-addressed prepaid return envelope with your application
Additional requirements and fees:
The fee for a tourist visa is for US$30 and US$37 for an e-visa. Children under 12 years old are exempted from paying the visa fee.
The fee for a business visa is US$35. Children under 12 years old are exempted from paying the visa fee. Applicants via mail can expect their visas within three weeks. Those applying in person can receive their visas within five business days, depending on the service expectation in the embassy/consulate. If you apply for this visa type, you are required to submit supporting documents such as a letter from your employer with the company’s letterhead and/or an invitation from Cambodia-based entity.
The K-visa is granted for free provided that the applicant submits a proof of Cambodian nationality such as the birth certificate of one’s Cambodian parents.
The diplomatic or official passport is free of charge. Applicants are required to submit an official verbal note that fully explains the purpose of visiting Cambodia.
The tourist visa is strictly for a single entry to Cambodia only. This is valid for three months starting from the issue date. Citizens of Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam and Myanmar are exempted from the tourist visa requirement. This visa type may be extended for one month. The tourist visa may be obtained on arrival at the airports in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, valid for 30 days.
The business visa is required if you are seeking employment or on foreign assignment in Cambodia. The business visa may be extended for one, three, six or twelve months. The business visa may be obtained on arrival at the airports in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, valid for 30 days.
The Khmer visa or K-visa is issued gratis to Cambodians living abroad entering the country a foreign passport.
Holders of diplomatic passports of the following countries are exempted from the visa requirement: Belarus, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, China, Cuba, Ecuador, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam.
Know more about Phnom Penh, Cambodia with our relocation guide for expatriates:
- Introduction to Phnom Penh
- Living in Phnom Penh
- Working in Phnom Penh
- Useful information in Phnom Penh
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