Home in Phuket has put together an overview of the visa requirements for short and long term visitors to the Kingdom. The following information is to offer a guide of the various visas that can be applied for depending on the purpose and length of stay in Phuket or further afield within the Kingdom of Thailand.
Every person requires a passport when travelling to Phuket. It's a legal requirement. Each country has various different visa requirements upon entering their country and for a multitude of different reasons. As a side note, all visa applications require at least six months validity in the passport from the date of entering the country. Requirements needed for each country can be found here.
Young beautiful friends travelers with backpacks walking | Credit: cookie_studio on freepik
People that would like to visit Thailand for under 30 days will receive a stamp upon arrival. If however, visitors would like to stay for a more extended period in the Kingdom, then there are two alternatives: tourist visa three-month single entry and tourist visa six-month multi-entry. Both of these visas can be applied for via the Thai embassy or consulate and require proof of sufficient funds. Extensions can be applied for at immigration offices in Thailand for a small fee.
Caucasian man working | Credit: rawpixel.com on Freepik
If visitors plan to work in Thailand; then they need a non-immigrant 'B' visa. The initial 90-day visa affords applicants time to apply for their work permit either via their employer or by creating a company. Once the work permit is received, they can then apply for the one-year non-immigrant B visa. It is then required that visa holders leave the country every 90 days.
Full shot couple having fun at seaside | Credit: Freepik
The non-immigrant 'O-A' or 'long stay' visa requires a little patience to complete. Retirees must be at least 50 years old and have a clean criminal background. The retiree must have at least THB800,000 in a Thai bank account (this must remain in the bank); receive a pension or income of at least THB65,000 per month; or a combination of savings, pension or income. 90-day reporting is required at the immigration office or online.
Bride and Groom Holding Hands Wedding Ring Flower | Credit: Photos by Lanty on Unsplash
The complicated extension of stay based on marriage offers a one-year extension of a 90-day single-entry non-immigrant 'O' visa or a one-year multiple-entry non-immigrant 'O' visa. The latter is for a year but in 90-day sections. Both are available via Thai embassies or consulates in the foreigners home country. During the application, the marriage certificate must be presented together with the spouse's national ID. The applicant must have a monthly income of at least THB40,000 or THB400,000 in a Thai bank.
ED Visa | Credit: Thai Education Visa with IH Bangkok
Once the application has been secured with a Thai language school, a non-immigrant ED visa can be obtained from any Thai embassy or consulate outside of Thailand. Thai immigration will conduct random tests for the duration of their schooling to ensure that lessons are being taken and prevent legal exploitation of this visa. Once the paperwork is in place, the student is required to have at least one lesson a week and report to immigration every 90-days.
Thailand Elite | Credit: Thai Visa Express
The Thailand Elite Visa is a multiple entry visa, valid for five years, and renewable as long as the membership is still valid. With the basic package starting at THB500,000 for the first year and then yearly extensions this offers those who have the cash an easy route to reside in the Kingdom. The membership affords the visa holder various privileges including immigration concierge for 90-day reporting, airport limousine services, spa treatments, shopping discounts and cheaper banking.
Do not overstay in Thailand. Not only does the overstay attract a THB500 per day penalty fee, but can result in being banned from the country for up to 10 years.
Please note that this is a guide only and the visa laws can change without notice.