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Practical information about Laos

Practical information about Laos
Practical information about Laos

Practical information about Laos


Best time to travel

The climate in Laos is tropical with warm temperatures all year round, though differing in the lowlands and highlands, as well as north and south. The year is divided into two seasons: the dry season and the rainy season.

The dry season is from around November to April. During this period, the temperatures are pleasantly warm, there are many hours of sunshine and limited rain. Towards the end of the season, the temperatures rise and it can get very hot.

The rainy season is from around May to October. The period is hotter than the dry season and it rains more. The rain usually falls as heavy showers at night or in the early hours of the morning and rarely lasts more than a few hours. The increased rainfall freshens the air, the weather clears up and the landscape becomes green and lush. Although there can be a lot of rain for a few months, temperatures remain high.

Weather statistics for Luang Prabang: JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 27 31 33 34 34 32 32 32 32 31 29 26
Average minimum temperature 14 16 18 21 24 25 24 24 23 21 18 14
Rainfall mm 15 19 30 108 147 258 228 289 173 126 40 10

Passport & visa

As a British citizen, you must be in possession of a valid British passport. The passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the day you enter Laos.

As a British citizen, you will need to obtain a visa to visit Laos. There are two ways to apply for a visa: either on arrival in Laos or online.

If you opt to obtain a visa upon arrival in Laos, you must bring 2 passport photos and USD 40 in cash per person.

If you wish to apply for a visa online, use the official page for applications at Laos e-Visa.. On the page, click “Apply now”. Enter your e-mail address and security code into the box. The system sends a confirmation code to your e-mail address. Enter it, and you will continue to the application form. Here, you upload a copy of your passport photo and a copy of the biodata page of your passport, and you must enter your personal data and travel information. Double-check to make sure everything is correct, then pick your payment option and finish the application. The price is approx. USD 50 per person, and payment can be made by Visa or Mastercard. The processing time is approx. 3 working days, and you can check the status of your application here, using your application ID and passport number to log in. Once your application has been approved, you can print out your visa, which you must bring for your tour. Please note that your application must be made no sooner than 60 days and no later than 5 days before your arrival in Laos. Your visa will be valid for up to 30 days.

Click here to check the visa regulations on the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office website.

Travel documents

Prior to your departure, you can download our App here to find your travel documents and the contact details for TourCompass and our local partners.

We recommend that you download the WhatsApp app to your smartphone and add the phone numbers of our business partners. You can send messages and call them for free using the app when you have a Wi-Fi connection.


We recommend that you contact a medical specialist, your GP or an authorised vaccination clinic for information about vaccinations. You can also read more about the rules regarding travel vaccinations here.

Please be aware of the rules about yellow fever – especially if you are entering via another country where yellow fever is present. Some countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination upon entry. Your vaccination certificate should therefore always be carried with you in your hand luggage when you travel.



There is currently no Covid-19 vaccination requirement for entry into Laos. However, these rules may change at short notice. It is your responsibility to check these rules before departure.

Please note that certain Covid-19 rules may apply at the stopover airports on your way to/from Laos. It is also your responsibility to check this before departure.

You’re always very welcome to contact us if you have any questions about this.

Travel terms and conditions

Please read our general travel terms and conditions carefully, as these are part of the agreement terms for tours purchased at TourCompass. Tours purchased from us are covered under the “Package Travel Act”.

Click here to read our travel terms and conditions.

All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.
Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate click here.


Travel insurance

We always advise you to obtain comprehensive travel insurance when heading off on your dream holiday. It is also highly recommended to acquire cancellation insurance for extra protection. 

Click here to proceed to our page on insurance, where you can read more about our recommendations.



Currency, price level & tipping

The Laotian currency is the kip (LAK). Please note that it is a protected currency, which means it cannot be purchased in advance, and you can only exchange it in Laos. The current exchange rate of the Kip can be found here.

Visa and Mastercard can be used at hotels, most restaurants in Luang Prabang, but not at small local restaurants and markets. In Luang Prabang, there are also cash machines in a few places where you can withdraw cash.

Obtain an idea of the price level in Laos here.

Tips are appreciated, but it is up to you whether or not to tip. You can give as much or as little as you want. The following is an indicative guide:

  • Guides: 85,000-170,000 LAK per person per day depending on the service provided
  • Drivers: 50,000-85,000 LAK per person per day depending on the service provided
  • Porter: 20,000 LAK per item of luggage.
  • Maids: 20,000 LAK per room per day
  • Restaurants: At international restaurants, tipping is sometimes included in the price, and in that case a 10% service charge will appear on the bill. If this is the case, there is no need to add more. If the tip is not included in the price you can add 5-10% if the service and food have been good. Tips are not expected at local restaurants and street kitchens, but you can leave a few small coins on the table when you go.

Food & allergies

At the vast majority of our destinations, we are able to take allergies, as well as allergens or preferences into account when it comes to food, however it is important that you inform us of this when you book the tour.

Telephones, Wi-Fi & electricity

Telephones & Wi-Fi:

It’s expensive to use data and roaming abroad if it’s not already included in your mobile subscription. Contact your mobile company to find out what services are included in your subscription and what prices apply to you when travelling abroad.

If data and roaming are not included in your mobile subscription when travelling abroad, we recommend that you use Wi-Fi when you’re at your hotel or restaurants. That way, you can call and write home free of charge via various services such as Facetime, Messenger and WhatsApp. Otherwise, it is also possible to buy a local SIM card including data on your arrival.



The voltage in Laos is 220 volt. It’s important that you bring an adapter with you, as the Laotian plugs can be both round and flat with 2 pins.

What to pack

Make sure you pack all your important and indispensable things in your hand luggage. This applies to items such as passports, visas, vaccination cards, travel documents, insurance documents, credit cards, money, computers, mobile phones and cameras, as well as information about your health and vital medicines.


Visiting temples

When visiting temples, there is a strict dress code. Your knees and shoulders must be covered, your clothes must not be see-through, and you must take off your shoes.

Bringing plant products into the UK

Visitors are not permitted to bring plants, seeds, fruit and other plant products into the UK from their travels outside the UK, unless they are accompanied by a plant health (phytosanitary) certificate. These rules also apply to small quantities of plants and plant products.

Read more about the rules here.

Travellers with impaired mobility

Please note that this tour is not generally suitable for people with impaired mobility. Please contact us for information about your options in relation to your specific needs.


Airline tickets

Most airlines have electronic tickets (e-tickets).

It is important that you check your name for spelling errors, as the name on the reservation must be exactly as it appears on your passport. If your name needs to be corrected, please contact us as soon as possible. Please note that this may incur a fee from the airline.

Seat reservation

The airline will assign you a seat on the plane at check-in. If you have specific wishes regarding where you sit on the plane, you can make a seat reservation yourself on the airline’s website or in their app. Please note that most airlines require payment for a seat reservation.

It varies when airlines open for seat reservations, but as a general rule, you can book seats from the time of booking and up to 48 hours before departure.

We also point out that the airline has complete control over all seats on the plane and that they are therefore entitled to make changes to the reservation at any time.
If you do not make a seat reservation before departure, the airline will assign you a seat at check-in.


Your passport and your booking reference, which appears on your itinerary, are required to check in.

We recommend that you download the airline’s app on your phone. In the app, there is an option for online check-in, which typically opens 24 to 48 hours before departure. The app also allows you to stay informed of any flight changes and other important information about your flight.

Please note that the flight times may have changed in relation to those listed on the travel itinerary you received when you booked your holiday. It is always the flight times in the airline’s app or on the airline’s website that apply.

At the airport

We recommend that you arrive at the airport to check in at least two hours before departure. It is a good idea to check the airport’s website for the latest updates.


We use many different airlines for our destinations. You can check the exact rules for hand luggage and checked baggage on the airline’s website or in their app.

Delayed baggage

If your baggage is delayed, please contact the staff in the baggage reclaim area to report your missing baggage.

It is important that you have your baggage receipt when completing your PIR (Property Irregularity Report).

Please note that you must not leave the baggage area at the airport until you have completed the report.

In the event of delayed baggage, we ask you to contact our partner, who will ensure that your guide/driver waits for you.

Flight delays or cancellations

Should any changes occur in connection with your flight reservation before departure, we will of course contact you to let you know.

Should your flight be delayed after check-in, the airline is responsible for rebooking your flight. They will typically book the next possible flight and arrange any meals and accommodation if necessary.

Our partner checks for any changes in arrival times and will naturally still wait for you, even if your flight is delayed.

If, due to a delay or cancellation, the airline books you on another flight number after you have arrived at the airport, please contact us on TourCompass’ emergency number.


Immigration & Customs


When you arrive at your final destination, you will go through immigration, where your passport and any entry documents and visas are checked. In many places, you will be required to provide fingerprints, and a photo of your face will also be taken for biometric recognition. You may also be asked questions about your travel plans in the country and possibly where you are staying.


Once you’ve cleared immigration and picked up your luggage, you will head through customs. If you have nothing to declare, you can go through “nothing to declare”. If, on the other hand, you have something to declare, it is important that you go through “declare”. It’s your own responsibility to check the customs regulations that apply in the country you are travelling to.


On your arrival, you will be met by a guide/driver who will be ready to welcome you with a TourCompass sign.

In the unexpected event that you cannot find your guide/driver, please contact our partner on the emergency number which appears on the travel documents.

Hotel check-in and check-out

Normal check-in is typically from 2 pm, and, therefore, you cannot count on getting your room earlier. If you’d like to check in early, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

When you check in, the receptionist will generally register your credit card and may reserve an amount. This is not an additional fee, but customary at hotels to ensure payment of any consumption from the minibar and the like. When you check out, the amount will be automatically released if you have not made use of this.

It is very normal for hotels to take a copy of your passport. In some places, this is a requirement of the local authorities.

Check-out is normally by 10 am. If you’re not travelling until the afternoon or evening, you can have your luggage stored until it’s time to leave. If you would like a late check-out instead, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

Type of tour and transport

Our tours to Laos are individual tours, however excursions and transfers take place in international groups of 1–14 people and with TourCompass’ own guests only.

In the event of unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, blocked roads or otherwise, it may be necessary to change the order of sightseeing tours and attractions in your itinerary.

Need for help during the tour?

We have a 24-hour emergency hotline so that you can always get in touch with us should anything unforeseen occur during your tour. You will also be sent the telephone numbers and emergency telephone numbers of our partners at the destination. In some cases, it may be easiest and fastest to contact our partners due to time differences, if, for example, you find yourself in a situation where your pick-up for an excursion or transfer is more than 15 minutes delayed.



We rely on happy travellers, and we would therefore very much like to hear from you after your return home. Send us an email at or call us on tel.: 01279704135.

Laura Arundell Trelborg

Laura loves to travel and is extremely passionate about helping others achieve their travel dreams.

Opening hours
Monday-Thursday 9-15
Friday 9-13