Transport and infrastructure in Laos

Our listing of the primary kinds of transport compares the infrastructure of Laos with the average of all countries in Asia. The traffic routes have noticeable defects in many places and are often not in a particularly good condition.

The waterways and ports listed refer to inland traffic on rivers and canals, as there is no direct access to the sea in Laos.

Airports in Laos

Back to overview: Laos

Road traffic

The network of roads and highways has a total length of 39,586 km. For each of the country's 7.38 million inhabitants, this corresponds to 5.36 meters. This puts Laos in 103rd place in the global ranking. However, it is also important to note the country's population density, which is very low at around 31 inhabitants per km². Like this, disproportionately long distances generally have to be covered to reach the more remote parts of the country.

With an average of 1109 traffic fatalities per year (2012 - 2019), road traffic in Laos is considered rather mixed. This corresponds to around 4.3 accident fatalities per 16.1 inhabitants per year. By comparison, this figure is 12.2 in the USA and 17.1 worldwide.

In Laos, traffic drives on the right-hand side of the road, i.e. people drive in the right-hand lane and overtake on the left. Oncoming traffic comes toward you on the left side. Here you can also find an overview of all countries with left-hand traffic.



 totalper 1 mio
per km²
Roadways39,600 km5,364.42 km167.17 m
Railroads0 km0.00 km0.00 m
Waterways4,600 km623.36 km19.43 m
Commercial harbors10.140.000


 total per 1 mio
per km²
Roadways14,699,500 km3,162.10 km459.66 m
Railroads280,000 km60.24 km8.76 m
Waterways260,300 km55.99 km8.14 m
Commercial harbors46,0549.910.001

Data sources used

Global Health Observatory Data Repository (World Health Organization)
Internation Union of Railways (UIC)
CIA Factbook
OECD Statistics
Wikipedia (german)
Laos: AirportsLargest airports and airlines in LaosThe 8 biggest airports and Lao in Laos with further information and data
Laos: ClimateClimate details in LaosA climate analysis for Laos incl. temperatures, humidity, rain days per month, hours of sunshine, Rainfalls
Ranking: MegacitiesMega cities - the biggest cities all over the worldRanking of the biggest cities worldwide. On top: Shanghai, Chongqing and Beijing