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Thailand Tourist Visa Extensions

Transcript of the above video:

In this video, we are going to briefly discuss tourist visas or more specifically, extension of tourist visas. Now, I'm going to take this into two parts - one is the tourist visa proper and we'll compare it to what's called as a 30-day extension. 30-day extensions are generally issued to passport holders in most countries in the West, the Anglosphere in Western Europe and quite a few other countries as well.

Most passport holders coming to Thailand upon arrival are going to be issued a 30-day stamp that's stamped in. It's not a visa per se. It's also possible for a lot of other countries to go ahead and get what's called a visa upon arrival.

So both of those are different. They're qualitatively different from a tourist visa itself, a proper Thai visa which is applied for in a Thai consulate or a Thai embassy abroad.

In the past, single entry Thai tourist visas was issued for 60 days. It was possible to get what we call a multiple entry tourist visas. So essentially, they're up to three single entry tourist visas and in theory, every 60 days you can leave and you can come back in and remain in status with that.

But part of the tourist visa, let's just go ahead and look at the single entry, the traditional one - the initial tourist visa is going to be issued for 60 days. There's an option, after having been here in Thailand, to go ahead and extend that visa by another 30 days to get a total of 90 days lawful status in the Kingdom.

It is my understanding and my experience that they're still issuing the traditional tourist visa in certain posts outside of Thailand, certain diplomatic and consulate posts outside of Thailand. It's possible to get a 60-day, the sort of traditional single entry. That being said, the six month multi-entry tourist visa is currently being phased in and how this is going to operate, whether it's going to operate in tandem with the traditional tourist visa or it's going to overtake the old traditional tourist visa, it remains to be seen.

What's clear is the 30-day extension stamp does not appear to be going anywhere although it does appear that it's only going to be possible to those issued upon entry in a given year pursuant to recent regulations published in the Royal Thai Gazette here in Thailand. And that's the law of the land, that's not the terminal immigration regulation. That is now law proper that it's going to be only possible to do border runs two times in a calendar year to maintain or to basically granted lawful status in the Kingdom.

What we're specifically talking about here is the 30-day extension of either extension stamp or a tourist visa. These are possible.

Basically, the Thai immigration a while ago said they're going to essentially consolidate the rules with respect to this and allow anyone of one off opportunity to go ahead get a 30-day extension. So if you're in the country on a 30-day stamp and you want to get another 30 days, that's possible. If you're in the country on a traditional tourist visa issued for 60-day status and you wish to get another 30 days, that's also possible. It requires a payment of a fee, filing of an application for extension and the ever popular waiting at the Chang Hua immigration office for the folks there to go ahead and process their request.

It's been my experience that these matters are relatively straightforward. We don't even assist people in this for the most part because most folks essentially do it themselves. But it is something to think about that yes, although they've tightened up regulations with respect to border runs, it is possible to get a 30-day extension just basically on what would otherwise be described as tourist intent to go ahead get a 30-day extension and maintain at least a little bit of extra time in the country legally that way.