How To Stay Longer In Cambodia
"Staying longer" in Cambodia can mean two things: It may simply mean the extension of a tourist visa or it can mean staying for many months or even years in Cambodia for purposes other than being just a passing tourist.
Extension only of the Cambodian Tourist Visa
A tourist visa can be extended for up to another 30 days. A local visa agent can do that for you very easily, or you may do it yourself by making your application for an extension of your stay as a tourist at the Cambodia Ministry of Immigration. The Ministry of Immigration is located in front of the Phnom Penh International Airport (across the highway). You will need to fill up a form, provide a passport-sized photo and pay US$30.00. A local visa agent may charge up to US$45.00 for doing the work for you. If you apply through a visa agent, be sure the person is not a fake visa agent who may ran away with your passport and money.
Staying longer in terms of months or years
For those who plan to stay for many months or years you need two things: 1) You will need to have a Type E Visa, and 2) You may need to have a Work Permit issued by the government of Cambodia.
What is a Type E Visa?
Those who want to stay in Cambodia longer than the number of days allowed to a foreign national holding a tourist visa need the Cambodian visa technically identified as the "Type-E" Visa.
There are four categories of Type E visa, which are as follows:
1. Type E B visa
For employed and self-employed foreign nationals
This is also called "Business Visa" and "Ordinary Visa". This is for foreign nationals who are employed, or will be employed, by a local employer in Cambodia and therefore need to remain in the country to fulfill their work obligations. The Type EB visa can also be used by those who can show documentary proof that they are receiving payment or financial support from an employer or a sponsor from outside the country of Cambodia and therefore can support their indefinite period of stay in the country. This visa is good from minimum period of 30 days (one month) and up to a maximum period of 365 days (12 months).
2. Type E G visa
For foreign nationals making job applications in Cambodia
This is for foreign nationals who are still making job applications in Cambodia and therefore need a longer time to stay in the country. The visa is good for a minimum period of 30 days ( one month) and maximum period of only 180 days (6 months).
3. Type E R visa
For foreign nationals in retirement age
This visa is only for foreign nationals in their retirement years (at least 55 years old) who may want to live as expatriates in Cambodia. Applicants for this visa must show proof of age and source of financial support or documentary proof of savings. This visa is good from minimum period of 30 days (one month) and up to a maximum period of 365 days (12 months).
4. Type E S visa
For foreign students
This visa is for a foreign national who wants to study in a school in Cambodia and can show documentary proof of financial support. This visa is good from minimum period of 30 days (one month) and up to a maximum period of 365 days (12 months).
Single-entry and Multiple-entry Type E Visa
A Type E visa has different specified number of allowable entries into Cambodia. The visa that is good for 30 days is a single-entry visa. You can use it to enter and stay in Cambodia only once. As a rule the 30-day Type E visa is the one given to a foreign national who applies for it for the first time. On the next application a Type E visa that has a longer period of allowable stay can be given. There is a 3-months Type E visa. This one is also a single-entry visa. The 6-months and 12-months Type E visas are multiple-entry visas. They can be used to go out and re-enter Cambodia in the number of times without limit within their usable periods.
Work Permit Required For Multiple-Entry Type-E Visa
Starting Year 2016, the Cambodian immigration authority requires a holder of a Cambodian Type-E B multiple-entry visa to have a Work Permit issued by the Cambodian Ministry of Labor.
A foreign national holding a 30-day or a 90-day Type-E Visa, which are single-entry visas is not required to have a work permit. On the other hand, holders of a 6-month or 12-month Type E visas, which are multiple-entry visas, are currently required to have Work Permits.
Work Permit Required For Employed or Self-Employed Foreign Nationals in Cambodia
A work permit is required to a foreign national who is employed in Cambodia. The Work Permit is given to the employed foreign national after his employer has registered his employment in the Cambodian Ministry of Labor. Those who are self-employed (engaged in an income generating activity in Cambodia) or are paid by an employer outside the country of Cambodia for doing an assigned responsibility in the country can apply for a Work Permit under the "Freelance" category.
How to get the Cambodian Work Permit
To get the Cambodian Work Permit you need to have a work contract from a local employer, or a confirmation of your appointment (or a confirmation of the regular financial support or payment that you are receiving) from your employer in your country (or from your source of income) who has assigned you to conduct your work in Cambodia (or is paying you for your services in Cambodia). You will also need to have a Type E multiple-entry visa.
Work Permit For Those Employed By Local Employers
If you are employed by an organization or a business enterprise in Cambodia your employer will need to submit to the Cambodian Ministry of Labor your contract of employment and a copy of your passport and Type E visa. Usually your employer will pay the US$100 fee for the issuance of your Work Permit Certificate. Your employer may also pay for your Type E multiple-entry visa. If your Type E multiple-entry visa is good for 6 months, the cost is not less than US$159.00. If it is good for 12 months, the cost is not less than US$299.00. You need to discuss this matter with your prospective employer prior to your actual hiring.
Work Permit For Those Not Employed by Local Employers
If you are employed by a company outside of Cambodia, or you are self-employed (engaged in an income generating enterprise in Cambodia) you can apply for the "Freelance" category of work permit issuance. For the "freelance" application you will need to have these documents described below:
1. Autheticated Document Showing Source of Regular Income
The usually accepted document is a confirmation of appointment given to you by your principal in your country who is sending you regular payment or financial support. The document must show your address in Cambodia. It must be in its original printing, not a copy, and there must be a printed seal of the office, company or organization that is the source of your regular income. The signature of the authorized signatory that appears on the document must be recognizable to be original as having been personally signed by the hand of the signatory, not by an electronic device.
This document is needed to support your application for a Type E multiple-entry visa.
2. Type E multiple-entry visa
To apply for this visa you need to submit to the Cambodian Ministry of Immigration the document described in No. 1 above, together with your valid passport and an unexpired visa, and at least 2 copies of your latest passport-size photos.
You may personally make your application for the Type E multiple-entry visa at the Ministry of Immigration (located in front of the Phnom Penh International Airport), or you may let a dependable local visa agent make the application for you. The visa agent will charge up to US$160.00 for a 6-month Type multiple-entry visa and up to US$300.00 for one that is good for 12 months. Your Type E multiple-entry visa will be available for you to pick up about seven days, more or less, after your application has been accepted.
You will need your Type E multiple-entry visa to support your application for a work permit. However, before you can apply for a work permit you first need to have a document called the "residency certificate". To get a residency certificate you need to show a rental contract. This document is described below.
3. Rental Contract
You will need a rental contract, executed between you and your landlord, the house owner of the house you are renting or the administrator of the building where you are renting an apartment unit. You will need this rental contract to get a residency certificate described below.
4. Residency Certificate
A residency certificate is needed to apply for a work permit. This certificate is issued by the local government authority (which is a commune and locally called "sangkat") in the area where you are renting a room, a house or apartment unit, which you declare to be your residence. To get this certificate you need to submit to the "sangkat" office a copy of your rental contract.
If you will personally do the paperwork to get the residency certificate, you will need to go to the government office of the commune where your residence is located. There you will fill up a form on which your passport-size photo will be attached and your thumbprint imprinted. As already mentioned you will be required to submit a rental contract executed between you and your landlord, house owner or apartment administrator. Please be aware that the rental contract and the residency certificate are all worded and written in the Cambodian language (Khmer) and you cannot read or undertand what are written there. You just need to trust that what are written there are the right things that can support the purposes you intended to use them.
It may take up to four working days to get your residency certificate.
When you have your residency certificate on hand you may start applying for your work permit. The application for work permit is made at the Ministry of Labor.
Cost of Work Permit Application or Renewal and Time to Apply or Renew
You pay US$100.00 upon the submission of your application for a work permit. It is good for one year. You pay US$100.00 for every yearly renewal. The time to apply for, or renew, a work permit is from January to March. It takes about 2 to 3 months for a work permit to be released to you after your application has been accepted.
Assistance of an established visa and work permit facilitator
It can be difficult for a foreign national to get the paperwork done without assistance from a local person because of the language barrier and unfamiliar bureaucratic procedures. It is best to engage the services of an established visa and work permit facilitator to make the application and the involved paperwork for you. We can refer you to a reputable visa and work permit facilitator if you ask for our assistance. Write your request to email@example.com