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Visa Laws in the Kingdom of Thailand

Nov 28, 2007
As per the Visa Exemption Rule, the Kingdom of Thailand allows foreigners from various nations to enter as well as stay here for a limited period of time. In other words, foreigners from countries that are covered in the exemption rule are allowed to stay in Thailand for a period of up to 30 days, for which there is no need for a visa application. Al though not a single visa can exceed a period of 30 days, the exemption rule permits foreign nationals to stay in the country for a period of maximum 90 days within a period of six months.

However, this rule is applicable only to foreigners coming here for tourism purposes. No matter you are a foreigner from a country not included in the exemption law or from one included in the exemption law, it is essential to apply for a visa if you want to stay in the country for a period exceeding 30 days.

Depending upon the changing requirements and purposes of people, there are different types of visas. A visa is simply a permit or consent issued by the Royal Thai Embassies or Royal Thai Consulate General to a foreigner who wishes to stay here for a particular period of time. The visa duration varies based on a number of factors, which may be up to three months, six months, or sometimes up to one year.

However, a visa is never issued for a period less than three months. Most popular among the visa issued by the Thai embassy is tourist visa, which is alternatively known as travel visa or visit visa. A tourist visa is usually granted for a period of up to 30 days or up to 60 days. Thailand issues a 60-day visa to nationals of almost 40 countries, and for nationals of about 19 countries, visa with a scheme, namely, visa on arrival, is issued. Even though the travel visa for Thailand is quite complex, its requirements are same for everyone. Among the requirements for applying for tourist visa is a valid passport from the home country, two passport size photos, and completed as well as signed application forms.

Business work visa is another popular type of visa issued in Thailand. It falls under the category of non immigrant visa group, and is also known as non-immigrant visa work or Business 'B' Visa. A business work visa is regarded as a first step to apply for a work permit in Thailand. When business work visa is issued for the first time, it is given for a period up to three months. But, you may get either double entry or sometimes even one year multiple entry visa when you apply it for second time.

However, you are required to leave the country every three months. But there is an exception and you may get a valid one year business visa, if you acquire work permit through an approved program of Board of Investment (BOI.) Likewise, in this case, you needn't have to leave Thailand every three months. But, you have to comply with a lot of paper works provided you leave the country for holiday purposes. Nevertheless, this is not applicable for normal entry visa. Some of the requirements for obtaining a work visa are sponsorship of Thai company, VAT certificate, withholding tax, and letter of employment.

Different types of visas in Thailand also include Ed Visa (Education Visa), which is usually issued to students who are interested in studying in the country. An Ed Visa must be applied at least a month prior to the trip to Thailand. Of the requirements in order to get this visa are a valid passport and a letter from the admission department of college or university you are going to study. Transit visa, diplomatic visa, and courtesy visa are the other popular types of visas issued by the embassies.

Nowadays, a plethora of law firms, immigration agencies, and other service providers are in the scenario to render to a host of services in dealing with visa laws as well as requirements. With an expert team consisting of professional migration consultants, these service providers undertake a myriad of activities in connection with obtaining work permits as well as visas and visas for a number of destinations located worldwide.

Some of them even provide the services of expert immigration attorneys for scrutinizing the authenticity of documents. There are also certain service providers who assist you in securing an Australia visa, the US visa, and the UK visa, apart from visas for other countries such as New Zealand and South Africa.
About the Author
For nearly 30 years, Bamrung Suvicha Apisakdi Law Associates (BSA Law) has focused on providing reliable legal advice and services to the Thai and foreign business community in Thailand. We provide international standards of legal services while retaining the customs of the Thai business culture.
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