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Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

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Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:55 am

I used to stay in Thailand long term on tourist VISAS, but it seems now they're cracking down. No longer can you just live there by hopping the border and renewing your tourist VISA:

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/nationa ... 38504.html

What are some others ways to legally stay in Thailand on the long term?

I want to go back to Thailand again, but I have a string of tourist VISAS in my passport.

Any advice? Or do you think I have to look elsewhere now?
Last edited by Voice of Reason on Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby Jester » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:10 am

Voice of Reason wrote:I used to stay in Thailand long term on tourist VIAS, but it seems now they're cracking down. No longer can you just live there by hopping the border and renewing your tourist VISA:

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/nationa ... 38504.html

What are some others ways to legally stay in Thailand on the long term?

I want to go back to Thailand again, but I have a strong of tourist VISAS.

Any advice? Or do you think I have to look elsewhere now?


SERIOUS post here.


FOREIGNERS WHO do regular visa runs in order to extend their stay in Thailand have less than a month before a crackdown by the authorities to enforce immigration laws more strictly.

From August 13, people will not be able to re-enter the country, regardless of their choice of transport.

The Immigration Bureau has already instructed officials to deny entry to foreigners doing visa runs as a measure to stop the exploitation of tourist visas and visa exemptions to live or work here.



AmericanInBangkok, who used to post on HA, mentioned the Thai educational visa. Sign up with a language school, to learn Thai, keeps you there for a year. Renew back-to-back is ok.

They also have a business visa. No need to attend classes! You have to pay something, like a grand or so, but what the hell. I think it also requires getting a letter of reference from a Thai business. I BELIEVE that this visa also allows you to open a bank account.
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Re: Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby Rock » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:37 am

Voice of Reason wrote:I used to stay in Thailand long term on tourist VIAS, but it seems now they're cracking down. No longer can you just live there by hopping the border and renewing your tourist VISA:

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/nationa ... 38504.html

What are some others ways to legally stay in Thailand on the long term?

I want to go back to Thailand again, but I have a strong of tourist VISAS.

Any advice? Or do you think I have to look elsewhere now?


starchild5 told me it's easy to get a one year visa to study Thai with not too much in the way of obligatory class hours. I think cost is around US$1,000.
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Re: Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:15 am

Jester wrote:They also have a business visa. No need to attend classes! You have to pay something, like a grand or so, but what the hell. I think it also requires getting a letter of reference from a Thai business. I BELIEVE that this visa also allows you to open a bank account.


I don't really understand this. Do you have to have a business? Is it a business VISA, or a "business" VISA?
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Re: Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:21 am

Jester wrote:AmericanInBangkok, who used to post on HA, mentioned the Thai educational visa. Sign up with a language school, to learn Thai, keeps you there for a year. Renew back-to-back is ok.


Rock wrote: starchild5 told me it's easy to get a one year visa to study Thai with not too much in the way of obligatory class hours. I think cost is around US$1,000.


So it seems the only way to stay in Thailand long term is to pay $1000 for a "business" VISA or "education" VISA.

I don't know...it seems a bit much to me compared to tourist VISAS, even if it is for a year and you don't have to go border hopping (which I enjoyed).

I might have to consider going elsewhere...

Thanks anyway for the advice :)
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Re: Can you stay in Thailand long term without tourist VISA?

Postby starchild5 » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:27 am

Rock wrote:
Voice of Reason wrote:I used to stay in Thailand long term on tourist VIAS, but it seems now they're cracking down. No longer can you just live there by hopping the border and renewing your tourist VISA:

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/nationa ... 38504.html

What are some others ways to legally stay in Thailand on the long term?

I want to go back to Thailand again, but I have a strong of tourist VISAS.

Any advice? Or do you think I have to look elsewhere now?


starchild5 told me it's easy to get a one year visa to study Thai with not too much in the way of obligatory class hours. I think cost is around US$1,000.


Yes, ED visa through reputed schools in Thailand...This site I have been in touch and its owned by a western guy so the service is good and he explains the procedure very clearly.

Know that due to coup and recent visa crack down...entering Thailand on any visa has become a bit complicated..DO more research

One can also get Thai ED visa for one year from reputed schools like

http://www.thaiwalen.com/
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Postby Jester » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:27 am

In order not to pay, Cambodia will work best. Business visa there is like 25$ or something for one year. Back-to-back ok.
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Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:53 am

Do you think this VISA crackdown stuff will be permanent, or is it something that will pass?
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Postby Yohan » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:07 am

I think it will be permanent as all border points into Thailand are now connected online and it is easy to check at the border, who was entering how many times with what kind of visa or visa exemption in the past.

The rule always said, tourist means up to 180 days per year, and all what goes over is not a tourist anymore. Many countries have similar rules.

In the past Thai authorities did not care much about how many times the foreigner was passing the border and how many days totally per year he spent in Thailand - but it seems from now on they care.
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Postby Cornfed » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:19 am

Jester wrote:In order not to pay, Cambodia will work best. Business visa there is like 25$ or something for one year. Back-to-back ok.

Really? When I was there 10 years ago a business visa on arrival was $25 for 30 days and then extensions were ~$140 per six months depending on which agent you used.
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Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:32 am

Yohan wrote:I think it will be permanent as all border points into Thailand are now connected online and it is easy to check at the border, who was entering how many times with what kind of visa or visa exemption in the past.

The rule always said, tourist means up to 180 days per year, and all what goes over is not a tourist anymore. Many countries have similar rules.

In the past Thai authorities did not care much about how many times the foreigner was passing the border and how many days totally per year he spent in Thailand - but it seems from now on they care.


So as long as you don't stay for more than 180 days (i.e. 6 months) a year, then you're fine?

So you can go to Thailand for six months, go elsewhere for six months, and back to Thailand again?
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Postby Yohan » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:39 pm

PHUKET: -- Pol Col Sanchai Chokkayaikij, Superintendent of the Phuket Immigration Office, this afternoon confirmed to The Phuket News that the multiple “Out-Inâ€￾ visa hop is now officially dead.

“Every immigration post on land borders and at airports now has the same rules.

“If they are genuine tourists that's fine. But if we believe they are not tourists, they will not be readmitted into Thailand.

“We can see [from their passport stamps] if a foreigner has stayed in Thailand too long [on tourist visas]. We will not let them in.â€￾

The impending clampdown has been a while coming, and has been applied in stages, with some Immigration posts ahead of others.

On May 13, the then-national head of Immigration, Lt Gen Pharnu Kerdlarpphon explained to The Phuket News, “Lots of nationalities come to Thailand on tourist visas but they come to work. I really want them to do the right thing, not to try to dodge around the law and evade taxes.â€￾

Immigration has also begun to apply blacklisting to people who overstay their permits to stay in Thailand.



The guidelines are still not out in written form in Thai, and of course there is nothing in English yet available.

However everybody who stays in Thailand more than 180 days a year (maybe counted from business year 1st May to 30th April) has to be registered with a tax number and has to report about his/her income.
This is the law in many countries (also USA I guess) and also in Thailand.

Tourists in general do not have a tax-registration, but there are 'tourists' who stay in Thailand since many years, and if the visa exemption stamp or the tourist visa is near to expire they are crossing the border and come back in a few minutes with new extensions to stay. -

There are plenty of Japanese businessmen for example who visit Thailand many times during a year for golf or visiting friends in Thai/Japanese companies etc. but they stay only for a few days. They never report any problems with immigration.

It cannot be only about how many times a foreigner is crossing a border, it is about illegal working as a tourist and about not paying any tax. - My family is also visiting Thailand several times a year, (maybe up to 90 days or so totally during a year) sometimes by airplane, sometimes by land route from Malaysia, we do this since over 30 years and we never had any problem.

2 x tourist visa (for 60 days) and 2 x visa extension (for 30 days) or visa exemption stamp (for 30 days) should be OK, but not more than that.

If you stay longer in future for sure, you have to prove what you are doing in Thailand - retirement visa, spouse visa are easy for a qualified applicant. However these visa do not include any working permit.

Thailand was never friendly towards foreigners who are working in Thailand. Even managing directors of fairly large international companies are reporting visa/working permit hassles despite they pay a lot of corporate and personal income tax.

Keep in mind, that except some certain kind of condominium-units, foreigners cannot buy any land in Thailand.

All in all, Thailand is quite open to tourists for short stay, up to 30 days, with visa up to 60 days - but it is not so friendly for long stay, especially if you are still a young foreigner and without sufficient money in your banking account.

Thailand is also politically very unstable and I can only advice foreigners to keep most of their money out of Thailand. Just keep in a Thai bank a small amount for paying utilities, rent, and unexpected medical bills etc.

Enjoy your vacation but otherwise do not expect much from Thailand - it is not an immigrant friendly country.

Of course it is only about the money, a Thai Elite card costs about USD 16000,- - it includes a resident permit with multi entry for 5 years. - It's really only about how much money you want to pay for your stay in Thailand. Just to mention there is no problem about Thai visa for the really rich foreigners. The usual double standard.
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Postby Voice of Reason » Tue Jul 15, 2014 2:04 pm

Yohan wrote:
PHUKET: -- Pol Col Sanchai Chokkayaikij, Superintendent of the Phuket Immigration Office, this afternoon confirmed to The Phuket News that the multiple “Out-Inâ€￾ visa hop is now officially dead.

“Every immigration post on land borders and at airports now has the same rules.

“If they are genuine tourists that's fine. But if we believe they are not tourists, they will not be readmitted into Thailand.

“We can see [from their passport stamps] if a foreigner has stayed in Thailand too long [on tourist visas]. We will not let them in.â€￾

The impending clampdown has been a while coming, and has been applied in stages, with some Immigration posts ahead of others.

On May 13, the then-national head of Immigration, Lt Gen Pharnu Kerdlarpphon explained to The Phuket News, “Lots of nationalities come to Thailand on tourist visas but they come to work. I really want them to do the right thing, not to try to dodge around the law and evade taxes.â€￾

Immigration has also begun to apply blacklisting to people who overstay their permits to stay in Thailand.



The guidelines are still not out in written form in Thai, and of course there is nothing in English yet available.

However everybody who stays in Thailand more than 180 days a year (maybe counted from business year 1st May to 30th April) has to be registered with a tax number and has to report about his/her income.
This is the law in many countries (also USA I guess) and also in Thailand.

Tourists in general do not have a tax-registration, but there are 'tourists' who stay in Thailand since many years, and if the visa exemption stamp or the tourist visa is near to expire they are crossing the border and come back in a few minutes with new extensions to stay. -

There are plenty of Japanese businessmen for example who visit Thailand many times during a year for golf or visiting friends in Thai/Japanese companies etc. but they stay only for a few days. They never report any problems with immigration.

It cannot be only about how many times a foreigner is crossing a border, it is about illegal working as a tourist and about not paying any tax. - My family is also visiting Thailand several times a year, (maybe up to 90 days or so totally during a year) sometimes by airplane, sometimes by land route from Malaysia, we do this since over 30 years and we never had any problem.

2 x tourist visa (for 60 days) and 2 x visa extension (for 30 days) or visa exemption stamp (for 30 days) should be OK, but not more than that.

If you stay longer in future for sure, you have to prove what you are doing in Thailand - retirement visa, spouse visa are easy for a qualified applicant. However these visa do not include any working permit.

Thailand was never friendly towards foreigners who are working in Thailand. Even managing directors of fairly large international companies are reporting visa/working permit hassles despite they pay a lot of corporate and personal income tax.

Keep in mind, that except some certain kind of condominium-units, foreigners cannot buy any land in Thailand.

All in all, Thailand is quite open to tourists for short stay, up to 30 days, with visa up to 60 days - but it is not so friendly for long stay, especially if you are still a young foreigner and without sufficient money in your banking account.

Thailand is also politically very unstable and I can only advice foreigners to keep most of their money out of Thailand. Just keep in a Thai bank a small amount for paying utilities, rent, and unexpected medical bills etc.

Enjoy your vacation but otherwise do not expect much from Thailand - it is not an immigrant friendly country.

Of course it is only about the money, a Thai Elite card costs about USD 16000,- - it includes a resident permit with multi entry for 5 years. - It's really only about how much money you want to pay for your stay in Thailand. Just to mention there is no problem about Thai visa for the really rich foreigners. The usual double standard.


So basically they want you to just go there a short time, blow your money, and then piss off back to your own country.

If you want to stay there long term because living expenses are cheap and you like the country, then you're not welcome.
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Postby Billy » Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:35 pm

yeah the thailand option is getting less attractive. one thing to the ed visa: one can also join a muay thai scholl. i read generally studying thai culture in a school works for ed visa.
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Postby xiongmao » Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:50 pm

I stayed there on a 1 year ED visa. It was expensive, but marginally cheaper than a business visa. My costs went up because I had to do a visa run to Malaysia to get the visa stamped.

Older dudes can get retirement visas.

The rules will be tightened in the coming years, no doubt about that.
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