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The gateway to information and updates about Thai Immigration, whether you are planning to travel to Thailand or looking for advice and assistance.

About Thai Visa News

Created in 2011, ThaiVisa News provides immigration information, immigration news, and travel guide and updates for people wishing to visit Thailand. The gateway to detailed information and requirements about Thai Visa application, whether researching travel opportunities, seeking information on travel restrictions, or looking for advice and assistance on how to move into Thailand. The comprehensive information of this website means that all answers to your immigration questions are at your fingertips.

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Thai 90-day Reporting
If foreign national is in Thailand on a one-year non-immigrant visa, they have to report their address in Thailand to Thai immigration. If the foreign national expects to be in Thailand over 90 days, the foreign national must continue to report their current address every 90 days until they leave. The 90 day reporting is still required even if the foreign national has a one year or multiple year entry visa. The 90 days reporting period restarts every time the foreign national reenters Thailand. Check the thaiembassy.com Doing the 90-day Reporting. There are three ways to meet the 90 days reporting requirement. The foreign national can notify the Immigration Bureau by appearing in person at a government immigration office. The foreign national can authorize another person to appear that the office for them. Or the foreign national can notify the immigration office by registered mail. A notification by registered mail must be sent to the Immigration Office at least 15 days before the 90 day reporting period. The 90 day notification is not a visa extension. If the foreign national wants to stay in Thailand beyond their initial period of authorized stay, they will have to apply for a visa extension. If the foreign national fails to file a 90 day reporting, they will face a fine of 2,000 baht. If the foreign national who failed to file a notification is arrested, the fine is 5,000 baht.

Most foreign nationals who wish to enter Thailand are required to obtain a visa prior to entering the country. However, there are some foreign nationals who are prohibited from entering the country. The Immigration Act of Thailand (1979), Chapter 2 "Entering and Departing the Kingdom" provides a list of the types of foreign nationals who are prohibited from entering Thailand. The following foreign nationals are prohibited from entering Thailand.

  1. Aliens who have no genuine passport or valid document in lieu of passport cannot enter Thailand except for special circumstances.
  2. Aliens who do not have any way of supporting themselves while in Thailand.
  3. Aliens who entered Thailand to be employed as an unskilled or untrained laborer, or work in violation of the work permit laws.
  4. Aliens who are mentally unstable or have a communicable disease as described by Ministerial Regulations.
  5. Aliens who have not been vaccinated against smallpox or any other disease and having refused to be vaccinated by an immigration doctor.
  6. Aliens who have been imprisoned by any Thai or foreign court except for petty offense, negligence, or exemption provided by ministerial regulation.
  7. Aliens who are a possible danger to the public, a public nuisance, a danger to the security or peace of the nation, or under warrant for arrest by officials of a foreign government.
  8. Aliens who are believed to be involved in prostitution, human trafficking, drug smuggling, or other types of smuggling that is contrary to public morality.
  9. Aliens who do not have the required money or bond as required by ministry regulations.
  10. Alien who have been prohibited entry by the Minister for reason of safeguarding the public peace, culture, morality, or welfare.
  11. Aliens who have previously been deported or their right of stay has been revoked by the government of Thailand or another foreign country unless exempted by the Minister.

If a competent government official discovers a forbidden foreign national inside of Thailand as described on the forbidden list, the government official has the authority to issue a written notification for them to leave. The foreign national can appeal the decision to the Minister. The order of the Minister is final and cannot be appealed.

  Visit ThaiEmbassy.com to apply for a visa to Thailand.  

There are a variety of Thailand visas available that allow foreign nationals to visit, live, or work in Thailand. The chart below provides a general outline of the requirements for the Thai visa.

Unless the foreign national enters on a type of tourist visa waiver, all of the Thai visas require the foreign national to start the process at an overseas Thai consulate. The initial period of validity for a visa is generally one year with an approved stay of 30 days to one year after entry into Thailand. Applications for extensions of the visa varies depending on the type of visa and generally takes about one day.

Type of Visa Initial Visa Application Validity of the Visa Permit to Stay Visa Extension Place of Filing Time Frame Fees
Non-Immigrant "ED" Education Visa Initial 90-day visa must be obtained from a Thai Consulate abroad (home country or nearby countries) The visa must be used within 3 months 90 Days after entry into Thailand 1 year for an Accredited University and 90 days for Language School Immigration office where the school is located 1 Day 1,900 baht
Non-Immigrant Visa "B" Employment Initial 90-day visa must be obtained from a Thai Consulate abroad Must enter Thailand within 3 months after the visa was issued 90 Days after entry into Thailand 1 Year Extension if Work Permit is Obtained Submitted at the immigration office where Employer is located 1 Day with 2 Visits to the Immigration Office 1,900 baht
One-year Non-Immigrant Visa "B" Application must be made in Home Country or the Country where the Company or Business is located One Year 90 Days after entry into Thailand No extensions; but the 90-day entry visa can be Extended up to 1 year if Work Permit is obtained Submitted at the immigration office where Employer is located 1 Day with 2 Visits to the Immigration Office 1900 baht
Non-Immigrant "O-A" Long Stay Visa Application must be made in Home Country only One Year One Year per Entry One Year extension if the Requirements of the Retirement visa is met Immigration office that has the Jurisdiction of the Province where the Foreigner resides 1 Day 1,900 baht
Non-Immigrant "O" Retirement Visa Application must be made in Home Country or Country of Residence 90 Days 90 Days after entry into Thailand One Year extension if the Requirements of the Retirement visa is met Immigration office that has the Jurisdiction of the Province where the Foreigner resides 1 Day 1,900 baht
Tourist Visa Application made in any overseas Thai Consulate Must enter Thailand within 3 months after the visa was issued 60 Days after entry into Thailand 30 days Extension Any immigration office 1 Day 1900 baht
Non-Immigrant "O" Marriage Visa Application made in any overseas Thai Consulate Must enter Thailand within 3 months after the visa was issued 90 Days after entry into Thailand One Year Extension Immigration office that has the jurisdiction of the province where the foreigner lives or the immigration office where the wife is registered 1 Day with 2 Visits to the Immigration Office 1900 baht

The process of obtaining a Thai visa is simplified in this chart. The process of obtaining a visa can be time consuming and confusing for persons who are not fluent in reading and writing Thai. Errors or missing information can result in long delays or the denial of the visa. It is advised that those who are interested in obtaining a Thai retirement visa to speak to a Thai Visa Specialist. The Thai Visa Specialist of Siam Legal International can assist you.

To apply for a Thai visa, please visit this page.  
Medical Tourism in Thailand

Thailand is one of the world’s most popular medical hubs because it is accessible, affordable and reliable. Tourists traveling to Thailand for its healthcare services have access to various five-star hotel type hospitals that hold Western accreditations, as well as highly-qualified medical professionals, and state-of-the-art medical technology. This article will discuss the most common questions on obtaining a visa for medical purposes.

What type of Thai visa do I need?

Foreign nationals seeking medical treatment in Thailand are regarded as visiting tourists. Therefore, they must obtain a tourist visa prior to their arrival in Thailand. Tourist visa applications can be submitted to any Thai Embassy or Consulate in the foreign national’s home country. The documents required for this process are as follows (please note that the Embassy or Consulate reserves the right to request additional documentation):

  • A passport, that is valid for a period of at least 6 (six) months.
  • A completed visa application form.
  • A recent photograph (4 x 6 cm.) of the applicant.
  • Evidence of adequate finances – each Foreign National must have at least 20,000 THB in their bank account.
  • Evidence of travel from Thailand – a fully-paid outbound air ticket.

Tourist visa application fees will cost 1,000 THB each ( fee subject to change without prior notice). All tourist visas are valid for 3 (three) months.

I don't have time to apply for a Thai tourist visa. Can I get a visa-on-arrival if I'm seeking medical treatment?

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, citizens from the following 28 countries are eligible for visa-on-arrival: Bhutan, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Maldives, Mauritius, Oman, Poland, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Taiwan, Bulgaria, Andorra, Malta, Romania and San Marino.

Tourist visa-on-arrivals are usually valid for 15 (fifteen) days. In order for the visa to be granted, applicants must submit the following documents:

  • A passport that is valid for at least 6 (six) months.
  • Proof of finances – must be at least 10,000 THB per applicant.
  • Proof of travel from Thailand – usually in the form of a fully-paid air ticket, with the departure date not exceeding 15 (fifteen) days after entry.
  • Fully filled out application form and a recent photograph measuring 4 x 6 cm.
  • 1,000 THB application fee.
I am from one of the countries listed in Thailand's Visa Exemption List. Can I seek medical treatment in Thailand without a visa?

Yes, but you may have trouble extending your stay. Unless you are a Gulf Cooperation Council National, you will not be permitted to enter the country for medical reasons. Individuals from the 52 countries that are allowed to enter Thailand without a visa under the Visa Exemption Rule must leave the country by their expected leave date.

Can I bring any accompanying persons with me?

Yes, as long as the accompanying persons possess an approved tourist visa.

My doctor says my treatment will not be completed prior to my expected leave date and/or visa expiration date. Can I extend my stay?

Foreign Nationals wishing to extend their stay can choose between two options:

  1. Applying for permission to extend their stay, or
  2. Applying to permission to change their visa type to a non-immigrant visa for medical purposes.

Those who wish to extend their stay must present medical documentation from their healthcare practitioner verifying that they are undergoing medical treatment. The document must specify what the Foreign National is being treated for, a tentative schedule specifying the time required for treatment, and an explanation to why traveling will be detrimental to a their health. Approved extended-stay applications will be valid for a time not exceeding 30 days.

Those who opt to change their visa type to a Thai non-immigrant (O) visa for medical reasons must submit proof that they are undergoing medical procedures at a licensed medical facility, as well as a doctor's letter specifying the Foreign National's condition and the time required for treatment. Non-immigrant visas are usually valid for a time not exceeding 90 (ninety) days. The application fee for a single-entry visa is 2,000 THB per application, and 5,000 THB per application for a multiple-entry visa.

All applications are to be submitted to the Office of Immigration Bureau. Applications approvals are entirely at the discretion of the Immigration Officer.

How many times can I extend my stay here in Thailand?

You can extend your stay as long as you have adequate documentation. However, all decisions are made solely at the discretion of the Immigration Officer. It may be a better idea to consider applying for a non-immigrant visa (see Thai one-year multiple-entry visa) if you are planning to undergo a longer-term treatment.

Can my accompanying persons apply to extend their stay in Thailand with me until I complete my treatment?

Yes. The Foreign patient’s family members and 1 (one) additional person are allowed to apply to extend their stay in Thailand. Accompanying individuals may apply to extend their stay in Thailand as long as they possess the following documents:

  • For family members: A copy of one or more official documents that describe the proof of relationship between patient and individuals – this can be documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates or house registrations.
  • For friends/other individuals: Proof of employment in their home countries, such as an employment contract or letter from employers granting temporary leave
  • An Affidavit of support from the Thai hospital and/or the accompanying individual’s Embassy or Consulate.
I am a GCC National. Do I still need apply for a visa if I come to Thailand for medical purposes?

No. Starting from January 2013, patients from Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates are allowed to obtain medical treatment in Thailand for 90 (ninety) without needing a visa. However, the following documents will need to be submitted to immigration officers upon entry to the country:

  • A medical appointment letter from a licensed medical facility.
  • Proof of adequate finances such as letters from the bank, and/or proof of health insurance that was obtained from their home countries.
I am a Saudi Arabia National and I want my daughter and maid to stay with me while I undergo surgery in Thailand. Do they need to apply for visas?

GCC Nationals are allowed to bring up to 3 (three) accompanying individuals who are also GCC Nationals. Said accompanying individuals are also allowed to be in Thailand for a period of 90 (ninety) days without a visa. But, they must still present the following documents to the immigration officers upon entry to Thailand:

  • An official document showing the relationship between patient and accompanying person.
  • Proof of employment in their home country, such as an employment contract.
  • An Affidavit of support, prepared by a Thai medical practitioner.

If any accompanying persons are not GCC Nationals, they must obtain a Thai 90-day non-immigrant visa prior to arrival in Thailand.

I have completed my medical treatment, can I continue staying in Thailand until my expected leave date?

Yes. You are allowed to stay in Thailand, strictly as tourists, until you are expected to depart.

This visa processing is very complicated and confusing. Are there any visa experts I can contact?

Yes. It is actually recommended that you consult a visa specialist when applying for a Thai visa to avoid any complications.

 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs

It has been reported in the Nation newspaper that changes are underway in Thai visa and work permit regulations. According to Ms. Issara Wongkusolkij, the chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, the primary change to work permit regulations is the segregation of regulations for unskilled labor and foreign investors. More support will be provided for foreign investors with additional changes to business and foreign visas.

Some changes have already been implemented in the procedures for work permits. A new online option for 90 day reporting is now available. Foreign business person who are coming to Thailand for a meeting no longer are required to obtain a work permit. However a business person who has the power to authorize contracts or approve agreements still require a work permit. Business persons who want to visit an exhibition in Thailand are exempted from getting a work permit but a work permit is required if they open a booth or trade at a fair (work permit exemptions for a state-run exhibition).

With the proper documentation guaranteeing their employment during the period, foreign teachers can not apply for a two year work visa. For Foreign Students, an education visa will still only be good for up to one year if they are studying the same course or subject. Additional changes have been made to allow foreigners who enter Thailand for medical services to obtain a 90 day Thai visa will extensions based on medical necessity.

The process for getting work permits and visa will be stream lined for business persons visiting Thailand on a temporary basis. The use of technology and automation will provide better access for foreigners who cannot communicate in Thai. The changes and amendments are still new but it is hope that they will improve the public's interaction with the Thai government.

You can check what type of Thai visa is appropriate for you by visiting this page.

 
30-day Automatic Extensions for Thai Visa Waiver
30-day Automatic Extensions for Thai Visa Waiver

The Thai government has implemented new visa regulations in an attempt to increase tourism while also closing loopholes by immigration scofflaws. With the number of tourist down significantly during the political unrest, the Thai government has made it easy for nationals of the 30-day visa waiver countries to extend their stay to get an extension stamp for an additional 30 days for only 1900 baht. This move is in addition to the implementation of a three-month visa fee waiver for travelers from China and Taiwan.

30-day Extensions for Thai Visa Waivers

In conjunction with the 30-day extensions for visa waivers, the Thai government has closed the loophole, which allowed foreign nationals to bypass Thai immigration law by going on a "visa run." These nationals previously were able to cross over the Thai border and renter Thailand on a new 30-day visa. Automatic extensions for those who repeatedly cross the border will no longer be allowed.

Thailand Education Visa

New rules are also coming into effect for Thai Education visas. For non-formal schools, Non-ED visa holders will only be allowed to remain in Thailand for a year before having to leave Thailand to obtain a new visa. In addition, the study requirements will be raised from a minimum of four hours a week to a minimum of eight hours per week. "A consequences of the eight-hour requirement will be that a course that is currently approved as a three-year course will now only have a value for 18 months. Another aspect is that the tuition fees now will have to be raised because of the extra teaching and the prices for a course will go up."

For more visa options, please visit the Types of Thailand Visa page by ThaiEmbassy.com.

 

Thai Elite Visa

Thailand Elite visa is a special visa aimed for high networth businessmen, digital nomads, retirees, investors, high income individuals, and families looking to move in to Thailand. The Elite member or card holder has special privileges such as VIP treatment at the airport, exclusive spa and golf courses, special discount at major department stores and shopping malls, elite personal assistance, and many more. To learn more if Thai Elite Visa is the most suitable long term visa for you, just click the link below.