Thai Visa – A Clearer Understanding

By | November 19, 2013

The rules governing Thai Visas can be quite mind boggling & are subject to continual change, hopefully the following information will give you a clearer understanding.

You MUST however still check with your local Thai Embassy / Consulate to ensure you have an update of the very latest rules, and treat my information purely as a guide !.

*New Visa Rules* – As of Nov 1st 2013 if you are a citizen of 1 of the G-7 countries (The United States, Canada, Great Britain, Japan, Germany, France and Italy ) and you cross into Thailand by land border you will be given 30 day visa not the previous 15 day.

Thai VisaThere are several different types of visas, I have summarised the information regarding each type for you.

I have also provided a weblink near the foot of the page which will take you to the Royal Thai Consul in UK, for fuller details, that also apply to many other countries.

“Visa Exemption” – With effect from 06 December 2008 any person eligible to enter Thailand under the old “Visa on Arrival Rule” will be granted a stay of maximum 30 days but only if entering the Kingdom via an international airport.

This covers the major 48 countries who’s tourists make up Thailand’s visitor numbers.

* The purpose of visit is strictly tourism.

* Must be in possession of a confirmed INTERNATIONAL flight ticket to show they will be flying out of Thailand within 30 days of entry,exiting Thailand via train, bus etc to neighboring countries IS NOT accepted as proof of leaving.

* Having access to living expenses of the equivalent of 20,000 baht per person or 40,000 baht per family.

 


Thai Visa

“Visa on Arrival” – The new definition for the Visaon Arrival is that IF you arrive “overland at a Thai border, rather than by International flight,you will be granted a visa enabling you to stay for just 15 days. The reason for this change I think is to cut down on the “visa runs”,that have enabled people to stay in Thailand almost indefinitely by just leaving the country at a border, then re-entering immediately.

The criteria of this visa are:

* The purpose of visit is strictly tourism.

* Must be in possession of a confirmed international flight ticket to show they will be flying out of Thailand within 15 days of entry,exiting Thailand via train, bus etc to neighboring countries IS NOT accepted as proof of leaving.

* Having access to living expenses of the equivalent of 20,000 baht per person or 40,000 baht per family.

There are also a group of 19 countries that the “Visa on Arrival” rules also apply for, this visa is required upon arrival at Bangkok Airport:

Bhutan, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary,India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Maldives, Mauritius, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Taiwan & Ukraine.

For the above countries, a fee is payable for this visa – 1,900 baht – upon entry, subject to change without notice.

Addendum: as of 1st June 2009 the Thai Immigration Bureau has issued a new regulation to be enforced from today:

“Any foreigner who has re-entered the kingdom on four (4) consecutive times on 15 days tourist “Visa on Arrival” stamps, will not be allowed to leave the country and re-enter Thailand. The only option is to exit Thailand and re-enter via an international airport, which will allow a further “VisaExemption” 30 day stay”.


“Tourist Visa” – IF you aim to stay in Thailand longer than 30 days, you need to obtain a Tourist Visa from your home country Thai Embassy / Consulate BEFORE you travel.

The tourist visa allows for a 60 day stay in Thailand, which you could extend further by either re-entry by land (+15 days), or re-entry by international flight (+30 days).

UPDATED 24th June 2009: as the Thai government continues it’s efforts to “revive” travel & tourism within Thailand, the government has confirmed that the the fee for tourist visa applications, effective 25 June 2009 to March 2010 will be waived.

This is for SINGLE ENTRY Tourist Visas ONLY, please apply at the Royal Thai Embassies and the Royal Thai Consulates worldwide.

 


Thai Visa

The final category of visas are the Non-Immigrant Visas – these are 12 month visas, broken up into 90 day stays.

Category “B” – which covers business & paid employment, if you are starting a Thai Company, for the purpose of purchasing property & launching a business, this visa is for you.

At the end of each 90 days you can exit the country and immediately re-enter for your next 90 day period to start, and if you time your last exit just prior to your visa running out, you can get 90 days EXTRA !!.

Category “ED” – which covers education & other unpaid work, you can study & attend courses, BUT without remuneration.

Category “M” – is for media, journalism & film crews, and is subject to extra requirements.

Category “O” – is for other which includes extended stays, marriage & Retirement Visa.

**Category “B” requires you leaving the country to “re-charge” yourvisa every 90 days, Categories “ED”,”M” & “O” entail a visit to your local Thai Immigration Police to get your visa stamped every 90 days.

 


There are one or two other possible permutations, but this is the broad brush version.

IF you have any queries or questions regarding any of the information above, please just email us using the Contact Us form on our website, we will always respond promptly & honestly to you !.

Please also click on the links below to find information on Retiring to Thailand & Buying Property in Thailand

For further information on Passports and Travel Visas we recommend a visit to Direct-PassportVisas.com ,a leading travel document website.

 

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