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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawWhat Are the Criteria for a Thai "Special Tourist Visa"?

What Are the Criteria for a Thai "Special Tourist Visa"?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing the "Special Tourist Visa" yet again.  We are discussing this in the context of the criteria associated with eligibility for this Visa.  Now again this visa is sort of being carved out of whole cloth. It is being created temporarily in order to deal with the sort of exigent circumstances we are dealing with in the aftermath of this COVID lockdown.  The Thai Government is trying to encourage tourism while at the same time assuaging concerns associated with COVID-19 transmission and they are taking a stern line with respect to public health and safety.

In a recent article from the Nation, that is, the article is titled: Cabinet Okays 9 Month Visas for Foreigners. Quoting directly: "Qualifications for the Visa will be based on Tourists' compliance with measures put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19 and agreement to spend 14 days in an Alternative Local State Quarantine site". We have explained Alternative State Quarantine in a prior video on this channel; a couple of at this point I believe. Quoting further: "Evidence of long-term residence in Thailand such as hotel reservation, rental contract in traveler’s name or that of family members residing in Thailand or title deed of a purchased unit.”

So again, this special Tourist Visa, in my opinion, appears to be kind of a stopgap measure to bring in certain folks that have kind of at least more than a tenuous connection to Thailand. Again folks that have a title deed of a purchased unit for property here in Thailand, just as a for example, or folks with long-term hotel reservation, rental contracts, family members. This Visa and I have noted it in other videos I have made contemporaneously with this one, this Visa is not the end all be all; it is rather narrow. In fact it is very much an Ad hoc solution to an overwhelmingly difficult and vexing problem and it is laudable on the part of Thai Immigration, the Thai Authorities, to come up with this and hopefully we are going to see some tourists coming in on it. But as you can see just from what we are seeing in the immediate explanation associated with this Visa, it is not going to be sort of a broad-based opening of the gates and just letting anybody into Thailand. There are going to be a lot of protocols associated with screening associated with this Visa; there is also going to be presumably a fair amount of documentation associated with showing that one has the means to maintain a prolonged stay in the Kingdom of Thailand.