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  1. #1
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    "Tourist Visa" v/s "Visa Exempt"

    I wanted to post about something which is asked over and over on many forums and f/b groups, yet seems poorly misunderstood by a LOT of people.

    The difference between a "visa exempt entry" and a "tourist visa entry".

    People from 57 countries can stamped get into thailand (for varying amounts of time depending on nationality) by just showing up at the border or the airport.
    They are stamped in on a "visa exempt entry" <- it has that catchy name because you didn't BUY a visa at a thai consulate before you got here, yet were given a permission to stay stamp for a period of time; ranging from 90 days, 30 days, 15 days or 14 days, depending on your country of origin and the way you entered thailand via air or land.

    Since August 29 of 2014, most people here on a visa exempt stamp can go to the thai immigration office for their area and apply for a 30 day extension for 1900baht.

    Please note: a visa exempt entry is NOT a "visa on arrival". <- That is what people from 19 countries BUY at when they enter thailand for 1000baht (the price is 2000baht but it's 50% off until Feb 28th, 2017).

    I routinely read posts where people say they got a free "30 day tourist visa" or a free "30 day visa on arrival" when they entered thailand. As has been pointed out, there is NO "visa on arrival" that's good for 30 days (and a visa on arrival ain't free), nor is there such an animal as a 30 day tourist visa.

    A "tourist visa" for thailand is something you BUY at a thai consulate before you come here and gives the holder a 60 day permission to stay stamp upon entering thailand.
    They are sold 2 ways;
    • A single entry one is valid for 90 days from the date of issue and when you enter thailand you are stamped in for 60 days.
    • A multi-entry tourist visa is valid for 6 months from the date of issue and is good for unlimited entries/exits to thailand for that time, with each entry getting you stamped in for 60 days.
    Tourist visa entries can also be extended for 30 more days at your local immigration office for 1900baht.

    Oh, just so you know; tourist visas for thailand are free at all thai consulates in the world until Feb 28th, 2017. This does not mean that people from anywhere in the world can waltz up to the nearest thai consulate and get a free tourist visa though. People from more than a few countries are required to apply for a tourist visa from the thai consulate in their country (or the one that services their country) BEFORE they come here.

    I hope this helps people understand the difference between a "visa exempt" entry and entering the country on a tourist visa you got at a thai consulate before you came here. Good Luck..

  2. #2
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    So, can I get a multiple entry visa-exempt visa on arrival, free, at Swampy now if I'm Welsh?

  3. #3
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    And now you see why I don't post more useful information on here

  4. #4
    Member Trumpton's Avatar
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    If it truly is a visa exemption then why does the stamp still state a "Visa Class"?

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat David48atTD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels View Post
    Oh, just so you know; tourist visas for thailand are free at all thai consulates in the world until Feb 28th, 2017.
    Todd, great OP.

    Can I clarify? I'm an Aussie, is Australia included in the list for free Visas?

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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by David48atTD View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels View Post
    Oh, just so you know; tourist visas for thailand are free at all thai consulates in the world until Feb 28th, 2017.
    Todd, great OP.

    Can I clarify? I'm an Aussie, is Australia included in the list for free Visas?

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    Yes free, but not for stupid people.
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    I was told on the last tourist visa entry I should have a proof of funds. I just printed off from my bank account when I realized my name is not anywhere on it.

    Will that still be accepted?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikem View Post
    I was told on the last tourist visa entry I should have a proof of funds. I just printed off from my bank account when I realized my name is not anywhere on it.

    Will that still be accepted?
    LOL
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikem
    I was told on the last tourist visa entry I should have a proof of funds. I just printed off from my bank account when I realized my name is not anywhere on it.
    Its on the first page written in Thai

  10. #10
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    So what do u do?

  11. #11
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    Its for the same govt department that runs a scam for retirement visas so they can't be too fussy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikem View Post
    So what do u do?
    The logical thing would be get a statement that has your name on it.

    Or am I missing something ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly View Post
    let me explain simply 100MB != 1GB RAM

  13. #13
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    wow, talk about a fred that TV should have hab.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikem View Post
    Its for the same govt department that runs a scam for retirement visas so they can't be too fussy.
    Just curious slick; what government department would that be?

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs runs all the thai embassies and consulates, which sell VISAS to foreigners (and are located outside of thailand)

    The border check points and the Thai Immigration offices (which sell visas and extensions of stays inside thailand) are staffed by a division of the Royal Thai Police.

    Who told you you needed proof of finances? A thai consulate or when you tried to enter the country at the border?

    IF you pull too many back-2-back tourist visas quite a few thai consulates now will stamp your passport with a stamp saying roughly "in the future proof of financials and proof of address might be required and even then you may NOT get a visa from them"..

    There's been a written (but seldom enforced) entry policy at the border where people entering on either visa exempt stamps or tourist visas where you needed to show I think 20Kbaht (enough to support yourself while you're here).

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels
    There's been a written (but seldom enforced) entry policy at the border where people entering on either visa exempt stamps or tourist visas where you needed to show I think 20Kbaht (enough to support yourself while you're here).
    10k for the 30 days, 20k for tourist visa.
    Didn't they scrap that some years ago?
    I remember it caused some upheaval - fundsharing at border crossings, then immigration date-stamped the bank notes etc.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mikem View Post
    Its for the same govt department that runs a scam for retirement visas so they can't be too fussy.
    Just curious slick; what government department would that be?

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs runs all the thai embassies and consulates, which sell VISAS to foreigners (and are located outside of thailand)

    The border check points and the Thai Immigration offices (which sell visas and extensions of stays inside thailand) are staffed by a division of the Royal Thai Police.

    Who told you you needed proof of finances? A thai consulate or when you tried to enter the country at the border?

    IF you pull too many back-2-back tourist visas quite a few thai consulates now will stamp your passport with a stamp saying roughly "in the future proof of financials and proof of address might be required and even then you may NOT get a visa from them"..

    There's been a written (but seldom enforced) entry policy at the border where people entering on either visa exempt stamps or tourist visas where you needed to show I think 20Kbaht (enough to support yourself while you're here).
    Mukdahan border office told me I should have proof of funds. There is no stamp. No one at Savan consulate said or did anything.

    Mae Sai border used to ask for a show of money years ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fondles View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mikem View Post
    So what do u do?
    The logical thing would be get a statement that has your name on it.

    Or am I missing something ?
    That would be right but no name on bank statement.

  18. #18
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    Well, in that case pay for a letter from your fucking bank, then.

    Jesus, it ain't fucking rocket science.

  19. #19
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    ^
    Which is what they require, anyway. A simple bank statement isn't good enough - but then, it also depends on the individual officer, sometimes a valid credit card is enough.

  20. #20
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    I was told on the last tourist visa entry I should have a proof of funds.
    Told by who? This is not widely enforced. As in never. Well, more or less. There is always the TIT factor to contend with

  21. #21
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    ^
    It is, if you do frequent visa runs to neighbouring countries.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels
    I hope this helps people understand the difference between a "visa exempt" entry and entering the country on a tourist visa you got at a thai consulate before you came here. Good Luck..
    God bless you and your knowledge.

  23. #23
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    So if they ask you for proof of funds can you just flash your Platinum card and tell them to fuck off?

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