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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawVisa NewsRoyal Thai Embassy in Laos to Begin Online Visa Appointments

Royal Thai Embassy in Laos to Begin Online Visa Appointments

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests for discussing the Royal Thai Embassy in Laos which is a popular destination for those so-called “visa runners/border runners” who are looking to get elongated status here in the Kingdom. So for example, some folks come in. They come in on a 30 day stamp and they want to go ahead and stay longer in Thailand. They may be backpacking or they may just like the country and a lot of those folks seek a longer tourist visa but that generally requires a trip out of the country to go ahead and get status at a Royal Thai Consulate or Embassy abroad and the Royal Thai Embassy in Laos is quite a popular destination for those "border runners or visa runners".  

So a recent announcement from the Royal Thai Embassy in Laos was noteworthy as far as I was concerned. We are going to go ahead and throw this up on the screen so you can see it but I will go ahead and read it. This by the way came from the Buriram Times. Obviously the announcement itself came from the Royal Thai Embassy in Laos but it was put up on the Buriram Times website which is where I found it so we are going to go ahead and put it up here for you.  Quoting directly,  "Information update: please be informed that starting from 1st February, 2019 you will need to schedule an online appointment before submitting your visa application for non-immigrant tourist or transit types via and print out the appointment confirmation with your cue number and bring it along with necessary supporting documents to the Visa Section of the Embassy. From 1st February, 2019 the Embassy will no longer accept walk-in applications or applications through agents.  Further details and FAQs related to this online visa application appointment scheme will also be available on from 28th January, 2019 onwards.”  

So obviously we made this video after the fact with respect to this announcement but I wanted to take a minute to see how this was going to play out and it looks like this online system has been initiated. Anecdotally I have been told that they are not just letting people walk up and file for their visas anymore.  You have got to go through the online system and process it through in that manner.  Again as noted, agents are no longer allowed at that particular post so you're doing for lack of better term on your own. Important for folks that are doing border runs here in the Kingdom. It is going to be a more formal process than it was in the past.  I have been told, I've never actually dealt with a visa run personally in Laos, but I have heard from people that there would be hundreds of people and you have to crowd up and in and they process people through; not exactly on an ad-hoc basis but they are doing the best they could; there are a lot of people up there. This system is apparently designed to streamline the overall processing.

But again this is just sort of another step in the sort of the overall implementation of more uniform rules and regulations as well as processes associated with the Thai Visa and Immigration System.