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  1. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by stroller
    Much of the colonial heritage is sadly neglected:
    Some of the French Colonial houses are works of art. Shame they are in such a state. Is there any way a foreigner can own or lease one on long term to restore it?
    Ownership issues are not so clear cut in Laos. Most of those old buildings were occupied by police, army, govt. officials and civil servants after the war. The previous occupants - Lao people loyal to pre-Communist regime still have some claim on those properties too - so but no-one really 'owns' them as such - so there's no incentive to maintain them by the occupants.

    Furthermore, its not easy to get a strong title or lease on the land and property without making sure you've dealt with ALL disputed owners and occupants first.....this takes time and money. It should happen soon though as land prices continue to rise in central Vientiane.

  2. #77
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butch72
    Ownership issues are not so clear cut in Laos.
    Thanks. I suspected as much. These type of problems are prevalent in "socialist" states. In theory, the government "owns" all the land with usage rights being at issue.

  3. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by stroller View Post
    It takes almost 2 days from Nan for the journey.
    I spent the first night in Khon Kaen and moved on to Nong Kai in the morning.

    30 bt per person for a shared Tuk-tuk to the border from the bus-station.
    15 bt for the shuttle service over the bridge between the checkpoints, 20 bt during 'overtime' - evenings and weekends.

    Laos visa:
    $40 for 'merkins
    $35 for poms and a few other nationalities
    $30 for most other countries, including Krauts (because we are such nice people)

    Additional $1 if you haven't got a passport pic for the visa application, and another $1 for overtime. 10/20 bt Entry fee further down the string of little booths to call on, and we're in the People's Republic.
    Where do you purchase the Laos visa ? At the border Lao Immigration itself , just like Cambodia ? So when the tuk tuk driver will inexorably force me into an agency to scam me commissions, the best thing to do is to tell him to fuck off and head to the border ?

  4. #79
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  5. #80
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    Dreadful news

    Quote Originally Posted by stroller View Post
    The Samsenthai has aircon rooms with TV and mini-fridge for $10:



    Is the showerhead a bit close to the strip-light? Nah, it's almost 2 inches away:

    The place is a dump, but then, one of the few where you may entertain 'guests' in your room. Something useful, if you meet ladies like young Pai who'd want to see all your tattoes in private:
    I have just checked in at Samsenthai Hotel and their rate now is 120,000kip = 500 baht = 15$ , a shameful 50% increase in little more than 1 year...and yes, the place is a dump, and the road is pestered by katoeys

  6. #81
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    Further dreadful news

    Quote Originally Posted by stroller View Post
    Ok, now the important bit, the visa at the Thai Consulate:
    The foking tuk-tuks still wanted 200bt after negotiations for taking me there and back.
    So I rented a bicylce for 5k = 20bt for half a day. It's only a leisurely 15 minutes peddling, if you find your way, which I didn't at first.
    Up to this ugly monument which is based on the design of the arc de triumphe in Paris:

    After you passed it, take the Rue Singha on your right, the Thai consulate is towards the end of the road on your left:

    No need to get involved with the scum who try to sell you application forms and dodgy sevices outside the gate.
    You'll get the application form for free inside, of course.

    2 passport pics and photocopy of passport required, which is a drag if you haven't already got these. Now the bicycle comes handy: there is a shop just 3-400 meters back which is specialised at providing just that, at reasonable prices.

    For a single tourist visa, you should also have your plane-ticket out of Thailand on you, as well as 20k bt cash, in case they'll ask to see these.
    Visa fee: 1000bt - yes baht.
    Applications 8.30 - 12.00, collect next day 13.00 - 15.00
    Now the tuk tuk mafia extorts 80,000 kips = 330 baht for a round trip to the Thai Embassy.
    To give more officiality to the abominable rip off they show you a plastified price tag
    In asking a double entry visa at the embassy I was not asked the out of Thailand air ticket. Tomorrow I shall see if everything goes the right way (you know the bastards can refuse the visa retaining their fee , which btw is still 1.000 baht per entry)

  7. #82
    Newbie Powerhammer's Avatar
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    I would like to know if any one has hired a car etc in Vientiane??
    I went across the new friendship bridge into Savannaket . (this is the closet crossing point for me) earlier this year with the view of travelling in Laos.
    All I could hire was a really crappy Chinese motorcycle. It had hardly any suspension travel and almost non existant brakes. Really did not inspire travel at any thing over about 30km per hour.

  8. #83
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    The tuk tuks are a bunch of thieving cvnts, I walk everywhere or hire a bike rather than try to negotiate with these pricks.
    Even the taxi I got in from the bridge tried to tell me, for the visa application I needed some photo copies of the Lao entry stamp, obviously his mate owned the photo copy shop.

    If I take my family I will take my car across next time.

  9. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thetyim View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by MeMock
    First time to Loas and I am very impressed.
    What are the roads like and are you driving yourself or have you hired a Laos driver ?
    A bloke I am doing business with drove us. Main highways aren't too bad, anything off these are very average.

  10. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterpan View Post
    The tuk tuks are a bunch of thieving cvnts, I walk everywhere or hire a bike rather than try to negotiate with these pricks.
    Even the taxi I got in from the bridge tried to tell me, for the visa application I needed some photo copies of the Lao entry stamp, obviously his mate owned the photo copy shop.

    If I take my family I will take my car across next time.
    I have read the same thing on the UdonMap forum , but today at the Embassy they asked me just a copy of main passport page. Anyway, copying the entry stamp and the Laos visa costed me only 500 kip in Vientiane.

  11. #86
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    Bicycle for hire

    Stroller claims he could pay just 20 baht for half a day, but I could find only one place nearby asking for 15,000 kip for a small one (too small for me) and 30,000 kip for a slighty larger one. At this point , I guess I will take the hotel offer for motorbyke round trip for 60,000 kip

  12. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaudente View Post
    Stroller claims he could pay just 20 baht for half a day, but I could find only one place nearby asking for 15,000 kip for a small one (too small for me) and 30,000 kip for a slighty larger one. At this point , I guess I will take the hotel offer for motorbyke round trip for 60,000 kip
    Sorry must correct this one. The above quotes were given to me by a shop along the main road, while just right the hotel there is another shop with a lot of bicycles for hire I did not notice before (I always turned left). I did not enquire prices though.

  13. #88
    Thailand Expat terry57's Avatar
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    Great piccys Stroll. Jeez, I love that dark beer Lao, friggin marvelous stuff.

  14. #89
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    Tuk tuk taxi drivers were born with about the same number of brain cells as your average Pattaya bar girl . They both do the same thing they would prefer to sit all fkin day with no customers than accept a more realistic price for there services . The plastic rate card is fairly new piece of bullshit trying to make out its an official rate !! Just keep arguing untill they come down or walk away . Cant wait for the Bar girls here to in Pattaya to adopt that idea !!

  15. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaudente
    Stroller claims he could pay just 20 baht for half a day
    I think you will find that strollers half a day was probably something like 9am to 12pm.

  16. #91
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    Hi ., so the Laos Visa is 35USD if u are from EU ? . . .

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