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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration Law30 Day Visa Exemption Stamp on Arrival in Thailand

30 Day Visa Exemption Stamp on Arrival in Thailand

Transcript of the above video:

In this video we are going to be discussing what really I should have done quite some time ago which is a video regarding the 30-day exemption stamp. I do a lot of videos on this channel with respect to Thai Immigration issues. Sometimes we get into some rather complex territory with respect to the Thai immigration apparatus but this video today is going to specifically delve into just the 30-day stamp.

Most tourists, especially Western tourists: European countries, commonwealth countries, the United States, various parts of East Asia, even South America, really many, many countries around the world are accorded automatic 30-day status upon entry into the kingdom of Thailand. Various countries have different sort of probably bilateral agreements I suspect, with respect to visas or Thailand specifically has unilaterally made decisions with respect to passport holders of various countries and the visa status that they are going to be accorded or shall I say exemption status that they're going to be accorded upon entering into the Kingdom. It should be noted that I'm going to go ahead and talk specifically about the 30 day stamp. Some of this may be relevant for nations, that like in the past, Australia for whatever reason only got 15 days as opposed to 30, I'm an American by birth and derivation and the 30 day stamp is what most US passports are going to get. UK, most of the EU, all those nations are going to see 30 days on arrival with the exemption program. Specifically what the 30 day exemption is, is it's not a visa, it's an exemption from a visa. It's lawful status granted by immigration but it's not an actual visa; an actual visa needs to be applied and obtained outside the Kingdom of Thailand before arriving in the Kingdom and that specific visa category is going to confer certain presumed lawful status in the Kingdom. Now people don't really understand this sometimes but immigration officers have the final authority as to whether or not to admit someone into the Kingdom so a visa in and of itself does not guarantee admission, it simply guarantees the right to ask for admission under  certain conditions. The 30-day exemption stamp is somewhat similar insofar as the Immigration Officer has discretion with which to issue it, but it is not granted before one leaves their country of origin. The 30-day exemption stamp should not be confused with the visa on arrival. A visa on arrival is a qualitatively different thing. There’s another video on this channel with specific information as to the visa on arrival and the differences between a 30-day stamp and a visa on arrival. One more thing to take note off is it may be possible to extend a 30-day exemption stamp here in the Kingdom depending on given circumstances but that's the topic of actually another video with respect to extensions of these extensions. The thing to take away from this video is a 30-day stamp is exactly that. It's lawful status for 30 days in the Kingdom but it is not a visa in and of itself it is simply exemption from the overarching immigration institution here in the Kingdom.