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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawAre Thai O-A Retirement Visa Applications in Decline?

Are Thai O-A Retirement Visa Applications in Decline?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are posing the question are O-A Retirement Visa applications kind of on the wane? The reason for the video I will get to in a minute, the reason I thought of making the video, but yeah remember there's a difference between the O Retirement Visa which generally speaking is issued in an extension application under the auspices of the Immigration Office here in Thailand which operates under the auspices of the Ministry of Interior. O-A Retirement Visas are issued under the auspices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at a Thai Embassy or Consulate abroad. 

Now again or sort of getting back to the reason I thought of making this video, I was reading a recent article in the Pattaya Mail, that is, the article is titled: Pattaya Grapevine: Casinos a cash cow. Then one of the sub headlines here was: Converting a Visa. “The O/A Retirement Visa issued by Embassies abroad is unpopular because of the stiff insurance requirements which also apply at renewal or extension stage. The most popular alternative route is a visa exempt (30 days on arrival) followed by conversion at Immigration to non-O." For those who are watching this video, I urge you to read that article if you are interested; there is more information in there about a couple other topics too that are kind of interesting but definitely aren't within the bailiwick of this video. 

So a couple of things there. I am doing another video concurrently with this one discussing conversions; I am not going to get into conversions specifically in this video. This video just the question is being raised, are O-A Retirement Visas falling into disuse because they do have this rather high and some would say, maybe onerous insurance requirement that just isn't there with the O Retirement Visa, with the O Extension. My answer to that is probably "yeah". I think if people are comparing the different options, an O Retirement Visa is probably going to be less cumbersome than an O-A if you are just comparing purely apples to apples analysis there. Now there are some who would argue that maybe the insurance component is kind of a necessity but long story short, it exists in one subcategory and it doesn't exist in the other one. As I have discussed in other videos in the past, I don't think it's impossible that we would see the O Retirement Visa one day have insurance required although I think it is rather unlikely. The events that have occurred up to this point don't seem to be pointing in that direction. That said, anything is possible. 

So it is an interesting situation. Will O-A Retirement Visas fall in further decline remains to be seen. We will certainly keep you updated on this channel as the situation progresses.