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Thread: Which visa

  1. #1
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    Which visa

    Asking the diverse group here what is my best visa option.

    I'm 49 and married to a Thai. I do plan to go back to America once a year for 4-6 weeks for the first few years.

    I am still in the U.S. and have about 3.5 months to sort it all out. Is there a better option than a marriage visa?

    I would appreciate any Info

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat Fondles's Avatar
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    When you turn 50 the retirement visa becomes an option.

  3. #3
    Hangin' Around cyrille's Avatar
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    If you're married to a Thai then a retirement visa has little going for it in comparison.

    The marriage visa is the one to go for.

    You can get re-entry permits prior to your annual trips back to the US.

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    I just did my first extension based on marriage and it was a breeze. Not as difficult as many had said.
    and you dont have to wait until you are 50, A couple of application forms. a couple of pictures of you in your home with your wife taken on your phone, and printed, 400k in the bank for a couple of months, a quick and easy nisit Also with an extension based on marriage from immigration at your home, and you are set for a year
    get yourself a Non im type O based on marriage, come here for 3 months, get another extension for 2 months and you almost killed half a year, Take a trip to the US for a couple of weeks , come back and do the same and you kill another 5 months. By that time you will be an expert and will be telling others what to do. LOL
    Don't sweat it,if you travel often you might never have to do an extension based on marriage or anything else, I did not for over 14 years, but if you do an extension based on marriage with multiple entrances is not difficult to do, and it has some advantages over a retirement extension. No age requirement, 400K instead 0f 800k, you can work if you want, and no medical insurance requirement.
    Others with more experience in the matter might be able to give you better advice.
    The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up.

  5. #5
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    Thanks it does sound like the marriage visa is best but thought there may be another option as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by naptownmike View Post
    Thanks it does sound like the marriage visa is best but thought there may be another option as well.
    There might be. I don't know.
    For me it has been easy enough not to care to look. Actually now being retired and having nothing better to do. it is a nice distraction. The Immigration visit at home was so pleasant, I wish they came over every month.

    PS: is your marriage registered in Thailand? if it is not, make sure you have a translated and certified marriage certificate with you, Ask the Thai embassy about it. I did not and had to go to the bangkok american embassy to do so, and because of covid , it was impossible to do,so finally they relented and let an agent go for me. Also before you come, make sure your passport is renewed. It is a hustle doing it in Thailand. And your extension will be only as long as your passport is valid, so if you only have eight months remaining in your passport you will only get an 8 month extension.
    Last edited by Buckaroo Banzai; 20-10-2021 at 08:54 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by naptownmike View Post
    there may be another option as well
    Any children with your Thai wife?

    If so, no financial amounts required, I have heard.

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    Stick with the marriage visa, by all accounts the retirement Visa just got a hell of a lot more expensive.

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    No children thankfully or I'd probably be working another 10-15 years.

    Thanks for all the responses.

    Would I start this process while I am still here In America or does it have to be done in Thailand?

    Thanks BB for the heads up on our marriage license I will look into having it translated.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    Any children with your Thai wife?

    If so, no financial amounts required, I have heard.
    Same amount needs to be shown, but it only needs to be your bank account on the day of application, not for 2 months like an extension of stay based on marriage.

  11. #11
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    I have a marriage visa and a work permit that runs separate from my visa. So if I lose my job I don't have to change my visa.

    400k in the bank for 2 months prior or show tax contributions.

    Pretty straight forward.

    No chance of working on a retirement visa.
    Lang may yer lum reek...

  12. #12
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    As to the marriage certificate. The process we went through was to have an original (raised stamp) copy issued by our county (Alameda) with signatures certified by the Secretary of State (California in our case) and then authenticated by the U.S. State Department. None of this cost very much, but the end result is a package with enough stamps that Thailand will deal with it.

    At that point it can be translated, and together with the State and U.S authenticated certificates can be submitted for legalization to either the local consulate in the U.S. or by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The U.S. certifications did not cost very much and although we had the translation and legalization in Los Angeles, the cost and turn-around time in Bangkok is less and faster.

    Unless you are a retiring public safety officer (who can retire years earlier than other workers in some states) you are >10-years away from having enough of an income stream coming in to use the income method for either marriage or retirement extension. You are probably faced with either regularly traveling back to the U.S. to renew an 'O' (3-month only) visa or filing for an annual extension here. Even at best your interest earnings on 400K or 800K are only ThB 2,500 or 5,000 (marriage or retirement respectively) per year and you, like us. probably end up having both 15% withheld by Thailand and paying U.S. income tax as a further insult.

    The other consideration is where to maintain your primary heath insurance. My retirement Medicare HMO required that I maintain a U.S. residence and not be absent from the U.S. for more than 6-months at a stretch. That and the cost of coverage for myself and my wife being >$1,200 per month (it was a very good policy with no exclusions and only minor co-pays) were one of the tipping points to our decision to jump ship to here at which point I began coverage with a Thai insurance policy. If your health is good today a policy obtained now will have fewer exclusions than one obtained later when you are old and feeble (joke).

    As a U.S. taxpayer you have been paying into Social Security for most of your working life which may be your only inflation protected income stream so it is important to investigate your earnings history before leaving. This information is doubly important if your wife lived in the U.S. as a permanent resident or became a citizen as your history provides the basis for her survivior's benefit which could be the difference between a comfortable retirement here and reverting to village life. If you are interested in the process I can walk you through it - just send a private message.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by naptownmike View Post
    Would I start this process while I am still here In America
    I believe yes, the visa is issued by your countries Thai embassy.

    Further annual extensions are requested at and delivered to you by your local TIO, once Bangkok approved.

    Or a new visa from your countries Thai embassy, if you are there at the year-end. I don't believe the new visa can be dated to coincide with the termination of your existing visa.

    Your local Thai embassy will confirm all the requirements.
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

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    Hangin' Around cyrille's Avatar
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    Surely you should have posted a 24 paragraph article on ‘Ameristani’ visas by now?

    You’re losing your touch.

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    Thailand Expat Fondles's Avatar
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    Elite Visa is also an option... go for the 10 year one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mudcat View Post
    Even at best your interest earnings on 400K are only ThB 2,500
    BAY Mee Tae Dai account pays 1.1%, paid monthly. Not a lot (was almost 5% around 10 years ago), but almost double your number.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyrille View Post
    You’re losing your touch.
    One replies to questions from some countries citizens, in a form suitable to their needs.

    Quote Originally Posted by naptownmike View Post
    Thanks for all the responses.
    Note, made prior to your off topic reply.

    Which appears, in this case, to have been succesfuliy understood by the OP.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond View Post
    BAY Mee Tae Dai account pays 1.1%, paid monthly. Not a lot (was almost 5% around 10 years ago), but almost double your number.
    Right you are, don't know how I came up with those results . My wife has her account there but I opted for term account at Bangkok Bank then @ 1.5%, now at 0.5%

  19. #19
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    Is this the latest latest news,or they going to change again?

    I'm considering just getting a flight and get 30 days and sorting out Visa when i get there,as after ringing the London embassy they don't seem sure whats happening

    Anyone got any news?

  21. #21
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    Thanks to everyone for all the helpful info.

    I'm still recovering from paperwork overload getting the wife and dog safely back to Thailand so will probably start on this in a few weeks.

    I did look into the various elite visa options. It just didn't seem worth it after carful consideration. The 20 year option looked the most promising but is saving a few days a year at immigration worth a million Baht.

    To me it wasn't not now anyway there are so many other things I'd rather spend a million on.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chico View Post
    Is this the latest latest news,or they going to change again
    It is certainly the clearest posted here on TD.

    Change or interpretation.

    As I have posted previously, some government employees are not fully aware of their own "rules".

    Quote Originally Posted by Chico View Post
    sorting out Visa when i get there
    Depending on Which visa

    you choose, good luck with your Thai agent.



    One box in the chart states:

    COVID test result/Alternative Qurantine

    "Have a COVID test result issued within 72 hours before travelling.

    Which is open for "intrepretation".

    Some airlines require:

    "Arriving in Thailand', not "before travelling". For some it may take 24+ hours, from leaving home/travelling to airport, waiting, transit stop, waiting ...., "Arrive in Thailand".

    Check your airline rules.
    Last edited by OhOh; 22-10-2021 at 11:54 AM.

  23. #23
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    I must say considering they are opening in a few days, they ain't that bothered.

    The embassy is now closed from 22nd to 25th

    I'm thinking of getting tourist visa then once there changing to marriage visa, hopefully my Chong Mek friend can arrange

  24. #24
    Custom User Neverna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chico View Post
    I'm thinking of getting tourist visa then once there changing to marriage visa, hopefully my Chong Mek friend can arrange
    I thought you got divorced, Chico.












    * 25 July 2017.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverna View Post
    I thought you got divorced, Chico.
    so did I but when she got to Amphur she turned back, been trying to get her to agree to finish papers for 3
    years.

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