Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

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Big Boy
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Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by Big Boy »

I'm planning a short trip to Laos in December. My current routing would see me fly into Huay Xai. First question is has anybody flown into Huay Xai?

I have been looking into visa requirements:
  • Initially I was thinking $40 visa on arrival - not available at Huay Xai
  • I then looked at e-visa - not for entry to Huay Xai
Huay Xai is an international airport, so I presume they receive international travellers. How do these travellers actually enter the country? Is there another type of visa I need to look at?

Or is it easier to find a different entry point (Luang Prabang) i.e. do my trip in reverse and simply depart via Huay Xai?
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by buksida »

I've departed via Huay Xai overland, never knew it had an airport, its a tiny border town on the river. I would use Luang Prabang which is much larger (town and airport) and equipped to deal with foreign tourists.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by caller »

I am visiting Luang Prabang in September. I was intending to apply for an evisa, although I haven't looked into that in any great detail.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by STEVE G »

I've just had a look on some aviation websites and it doesn't seem to be an international airport at Huay Xai.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

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buksida wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 1:30 pm I've departed via Huay Xai overland, never knew it had an airport, its a tiny border town on the river. I would use Luang Prabang which is much larger (town and airport) and equipped to deal with foreign tourists.
Yes, it definitely has an airport, and an alternative name/spelling is Ban Huoeisay Airport. It just seems crazy an international airport can't handle arriving international passengers. However, living in Thailand, I suppose I should expect anything :laugh:

Luang Prabang is sounding a much better routing though, departing via Ban Huoeisay Airport. It simply turns my planning upside down :banghead:

A 3rd plan is fly to Chiang Rai, and a 100Km taxi to Chiang Khong, where I'd be picked up and travel across the Friendship Bridge, where visa on arrival is available. An extra 100Km by road to get a visa does sound a bit cock-eyed though.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

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caller wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:03 pm I am visiting Luang Prabang in September. I was intending to apply for an evisa, although I haven't looked into that in any great detail.
e-visa or visa on arrival is possible there.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by Big Boy »

STEVE G wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:04 pm I've just had a look on some aviation websites and it doesn't seem to be an international airport at Huay Xai.
Maybe I'm being naïve, and assuming the fact Huay Xai receives international flights, it is an international airport. Here is a screen capture from earlier investigations.

Huey Xai.png
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by STEVE G »

^I think the (all airports) bit is relevant there, those are flights going to that area, ( probably in Thailand! ). The airport code for Huay Xai is HOE and that doesn't seem to be an international airport.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by Big Boy »

Huay Xai isn't in Thailand, it is in Laos. However, it looks as though you may be on to something there. Huay Xai definitely has an airport, but my latest enquiry is actually offering me Mae Fah Luang - Chiang Rai International Airport (CEI). Whoops!!! Time to delve deeper. Maybe the 100Km taxi ride isn't so ludicrous.

Thank you, and I'll let you know.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by Big Boy »

Thanks again Steve, you were right, so its a taxi from Chiang Rai.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by malcolminthemiddle »

I lived in Huay Xai some years back working on the road project connecting Huay Xai to Kunming, in China.

As mentioned, Huay Xai is a border town on the Mekong.

We used to fly to Chiang Rai and drive to Chiang Khong where we would have dinner and spend a relaxing night in a riverside guest house before crossing the river to Laos in the morning. Back then, before the bridge was built the crossing was made in a narrow boat.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by Big Boy »

Chiang Khong is most likely where I will overnight. Do you have any accommodation recommendations please?
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by caller »

Big Boy wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:06 pm
caller wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:03 pm I am visiting Luang Prabang in September. I was intending to apply for an evisa, although I haven't looked into that in any great detail.
e-visa or visa on arrival is possible there.
Yes, I know, I was just wondering why you werent doing the same?
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai

Post by Big Boy »

caller wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 6:39 pm
Big Boy wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:06 pm
caller wrote: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:03 pm I am visiting Luang Prabang in September. I was intending to apply for an evisa, although I haven't looked into that in any great detail.
e-visa or visa on arrival is possible there.
Yes, I know, I was just wondering why you werent doing the same?
Because my trip really needs to start at Huay Xai and end at Luang Prabang. I have discussed doing it in reverse with the organiser, and while he says trips are available in reverse, available dates are few and far between. I am unable to book until the 2nd or 3rd week in September, and availability is likely to be very sparse.

The road trip from Luang Prabang to Huay Xai is 475Km and would take at least 11 hours. Chiang Rai is only 1/5th of the distance.
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Re: Travel to Huay Xai - Laos

Post by HHTel »

I'm not sure this is at all relevant as Muay Xai appears to be an intrinsic part of your vist.
I'm sure you're aware of the high speed train in Laos now. Vientienne to Luang Prabang in 2 hours! That used to be a 10 hour journey by road.
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