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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat
    Buckaroo Banzai's Avatar
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    My Immigration misadventure today.

    Long story, I will try to be brief.
    So today I went to our local immigration office to do my one year extension.
    Though I have been coming to Thailand for at least 16 years, maybe more I lost count. Married to my Thai bride 12 years. But never did a one year extension because when I was working I would never stay longer than three months.
    So this is my second extension, I did my first about a year and a half ago , but I did not renew it after it expire because we spend the summer in Greece.
    Upon returning from Greece I did not get a Non O visa , because I was in a third country vacationing and did not have access to printers and scanners etc. Also I did dot want to bother.
    Came back visa exempt, (it is now 45 days) and after that I applied and was awarded a No O based on Marriage At which time I transfered 400k to a bank account
    Dont like to keep more money than I need in Thailand. I get 4.7% in the US and Zero% here.
    The Non O is expiring next month the 5th, so I started the process for my 1 year extension.
    Filled in all the nessacery forms, took all the pictures,went to the bank and got the statements.
    Both on the 400k deposit and A years monthly deposits in case we needed to do an income based extension.
    Went to The Immigration , The person who checked my paperwork before I am forwarded to the immigration officer says the 400k is not in the bank two months, I know we say , We deposited it when we got the Non O and it will be two months by the time the extension is awarded.
    They say "Can't do" I say what you mean I did what you guys said, and by the time this visa expires and I need the extension it will be 2 months.
    Can't do.he replies
    Ok I say, forget the bank deposit route, let's do an extension based on income. I have deposits for the past year and have made sure that the Wise transfers were were all marked as "for visa extension" and show that they came from outside Thailand.
    Cant do he says money must be in the bank two months. By now I am getting frustrated and I am ready to blow a gasket.
    I know I say , but that for the bank deposer route, The income route requires 40k per month income from outside the country, these statements show a minimum of 40k per month deposits, and an average of 250,000 per month. ( we made some investment and I had to transfer more funs that I needed for daily expenses. )
    By now the idiot at the reception desk is trapped in his own stupidity and cant lose face by admitting he made a mistake.
    I say OK. can I talk to an officer. He did not like that but he agreed.
    Officer says , "Can't do"
    Why cant do. I have half a mill in the bank and show three mil in deposit over the past yeqr.
    I am beginning to realise that they will stick with their co worker regardless of what it is , or I say
    TIT
    Ok I say to the wife , when they could not hear me,let's go to the office in kalasin, we are not getting anywhere here, these people are not about to reverse one of their co workers.
    Let me talk to them wife says.
    So to save face , the compromise was getting another two month extension , so that by the time I come back the bank account would be more than two months old.

    Oh I forgot to say that the guy at the desk , offered to fix everything for 15.000 baht, To which I said to my wife "Over my dead body" , I'd rather pay 17K to an agent before I give this idiot 15K
    Last edited by Buckaroo Banzai; 23-01-2023 at 07:54 PM. Reason: typo, one of many I am sure
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  2. #2
    Thailand Expat
    Mendip's Avatar
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    ^ I'm sorry about that, mate.

  3. #3
    CCBW Stumpy's Avatar
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    Rough visit BB.

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Came back visa exempt, (it is now 45 days) and after that I applied and was awarded a No O based on Marriage At which time I transfered 400k to a bank account
    Dont like to keep more money than I need in Thailand. I get 4.7% in the US and Zero% here.
    The Non O is expiring next month the 5th, so I started the process for my 1 year extension.
    So you applied for and got a 90-day Non-Imm 'O'? And put the money in the bank at that time?

    Something doesn't add up.

  5. #5
    Custom Title Changer
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    I fooking hate Thai immigration, they knew you were right and wanted the tea money after seeing how well off you are, the fookers.

  6. #6
    Thailand Expat
    Buckaroo Banzai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    So you applied for and got a 90-day Non-Imm 'O'? And put the money in the bank at that time?

    Something doesn't add up.
    I came visa exempt , which gives me 45 days , The No O was two months not three.
    Last edited by Buckaroo Banzai; 23-01-2023 at 09:52 PM.

  7. #7
    Custom Title Changer
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    You can get 45 days now? I thought it was 30.

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    I came visa exempt , which gives me 45 days , The No O was two months not three.
    So now I am confused. You are right , a Non O is supposed to be 90 days, Why did I only get 60 days?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    You can get 45 days now? I thought it was 30.
    Temporary measure to promote tourism. due to expire later this year unless extended

  10. #10
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    You can get 45 days now? I thought it was 30.
    It's 45 days until March 31st (You can extend it by 30 days in country - once).

    TAT have asked the government to extend it to the end of the year.

  11. #11
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    So now I am confused. You are right , a Non O is supposed to be 90 days, Why did I only get 60 days?
    Therein lies your problem.

    What's the "must leave by" date in your passport?

    Are you sure you aren't applying for the extension a month early?

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat
    Buckaroo Banzai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    You can get 45 days now? I thought it was 30.
    Now visa exempt for US passport holders is 45 days. I suspect the same is true for EU,UK,Australia etc. But I dont know that for a fact.
    But the plot thickens. So I looked myself.
    I got my Non O Nov. 10 and it expires Feb 7th, so it is indeed 3 months and not two months as my wife had told me, and I thought, so I stand corrected.
    Wife is doing all the paperwork as my Thai are limited.
    So now I am looking at the statements to see when she transferred the 40K.
    But that's not the point. I concede the point that the funds will be two days short
    The point is that I have a monthly income , and a bank statement showing it , that is substantially more than nessacery for the income route.
    Now I am even more confused, because, Now when this extension expires It would have been 2.5 months visa exempt, + 3 months Non O + two month Non O extension = 7.5 months before I get a 1 year extension.
    Is that possible?
    Anyway, by the time this is done, I should be an expert in the subject, if senility does not get me first.

  13. #13
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    I arrived when it was still 30 days Visa Exempt (the 45 days applies to everyone who previously could have got 30).

    Because I had to do quarantine, I was too late to apply for the 90 Non-Imm O while on that exemption, so when I got to Chiang Mai, I gave it all to the agent who did:

    - 30-day extension to 30-day Visa exemption.

    - Applied for and received Non-Imm O.

    - Applied for and received 12-month Non-Imm O extension.

    I had money in the bank already so I all I had to do was go to the bank and get statements. In fact she came with me, so I just sat there while she did everything.

    Then I had to go to Immigration twice - for five minutes - to get my photo taken.

    I'll probably pay her to do the next extension as well.

    I do the 90 day reporting myself online, it's a piece of piss.

    So: If you don't want to do it yourself, use an agent.

    Otherwise, next time go to Immigration and ask for the document requirements and they will give you a piece of paper.

    In fact I would go to immigration and ask them if you can apply for another 90-day Non-Imm O without leaving the country.

    If you can do that, and you have all the other documents required, you can pretty well apply for the 12 month extension as soon as you've got the next Non Imm-O.

    If you can't, then go and have a weekend away somewhere, land on another 45-day exemption and then do the 90-day and the 12-month extension properly.

    Sounds like your wife doesn't really get it, and why would she? She's not a foreigner.
    Warning: Be cautious if you are a fragile pink

  14. #14
    Thailand Expat OhOh's Avatar
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    First experiences can be cruel.




    As I've posted previously, the rules for Thai visa extensions are available online.

    Also, available at mine and probably yours, local TIO, in Eglish and Thai.

    My advice for your next year application:

    1. Obtain the current, a month or so before you apply, "rules" from the government site and local TIO. Some "rules", financial records', requirements are 3 months or one year, PPPPP. Others obtained from your local district office, they will have an English speaker.

    2. Compare them and any differences, clarify with your local TIO. Take both versions. The government/Bangkok "rules" prevail.

    Why, because your application is sent and decided upon, by Bangkok, not your local TIO. Their responsible is that your application, for your extension, provides the requested information in the agreed standards.

    3. As the decision affects you personally, more than your wife, you need to understand the rules and supply the previously agreed documentation as required.

    4. English is an official language in Thailand, the TIO has to employ an English-speaking person. At my TIO the most proficient person is the senior administrator. The others can speak some, but may rely on the Thai fallback of shouting.

    5. Keep a copy of all the requirements for next year. A % may of course need a revision.

    Or:

    6. Utilise an agent. You will of course have to provide them the same correct information.

    It is, as many in Thailand repeat, "up to you."

    Good luck next year.
    Last edited by OhOh; 24-01-2023 at 12:27 AM.
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

  15. #15
    On a walkabout Loy Toy's Avatar
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    I, only yesterday, put all my retirement documents with an agent to avoid the merry-go-round circus.

    Cost me 8,000 Baht but worth it!

  16. #16
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    In fact I would go to immigration and ask them if you can apply for another 90-day Non-Imm O without leaving the country.

    If you can do that, and you have all the other documents required, you can pretty well apply for the 12 month extension as soon as you've got the next Non Imm-O.

    If you can't, then go and have a weekend away somewhere, land on another 45-day exemption and then do the 90-day and the 12-month extension properly.
    This is what I would do mate. Also strongly advise you go with the 400k in bank rather than the 40k per month route.

    Sorry to hear about the hassle bro but live and learn. Your lady is bright and charming which is a plus when dealing with immigration but up to you to make sure you have doc and financial ducks in line.

    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    I am ready to blow a gasket
    For a fellow your age don't go there. Could be terminal!
    Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

  17. #17
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    I'll probably pay her to do the next extension as well.
    We also did as you suggests. In Khon Kaen, before you get a number, the receptionist checks all your papers before she sends you to an officer. A lovely , and very helpful girl. Last time we did an extension it was a breeze, with her there.
    This time she was not there, instead there was a guy. I immediately could tell he would be trouble, and told the wife to come back next day . when perhaps the girl would be there.But she did not want to do that because we would need to get a new bank statement.
    I will give it a try in doing it myself when I do my next to this extension, since it will be basically a renewal.
    But if I have problems again , I will certainly use an agent. Life is too short for this kind of aggravation.
    And I need to learn not to get as upset over these things, after all This Is Thailand , you would thing I would know by now.


    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    If you can't, then go and have a weekend away somewhere, land on another 45-day exemption and then do the 90-day and the 12-month extension properly.
    That might not be a bad idea. I was talking to my brother yesterday, and I miss him terrible, perhaps I will get a cheap airplane ticket and go spend a couple of weeks with him.


    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    Good luck next year.
    Thank you for all of the above information.
    This would be the second extension I do,and I know what the requirements and paperwork is. but because I was traveling for a few months between the last extension and this extension, I had to start everything new.
    I knew that the money in the bank will be a couple of days short, which is why I also brought a year's deposit statements so that if the money in the bank was a problem (as it was) then I would go the income route.
    What got me upset was that the receptionist tried to shake us down for about $500 , and when we would not pay decided to make things difficult for us.
    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy View Post
    Cost me 8,000 Baht but worth it!
    For the extension based on marriage, here in Khon Kaen they wanted 16,000 bht. I did not get to be a "frougal" Greek LOL by giving someone $600 for something I can do myself.

    Anyway, I am just blowing team. I hear all the problems others had at IO but I thought that since I was a superior human being , these thing did not aly to me. LOL Apparently being superior does not insulate one from Imigration ofice clustefuks
    Thank you all for listening to my rant .

  18. #18
    Hangin' Around cyrille's Avatar
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    Funds need to be in the bank for two months before the application.

    That's it.

    Not corruption.

    Not difficult staff.

    If you're just using this place to vent then all well and good, but don't be confused about where the problem was.

  19. #19
    CCBW Stumpy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyrille View Post
    Funds need to be in the bank for two months before the application.

    That's it.

    Not corruption.

    Not difficult staff.

    If you're just using this place to vent then all well and good, but don't be confused about where the problem was.
    I agree Cyrille. All the requirements are clearly defined. It isn't corruption.

    One thing I did the first couple of times, my wife and I checked and double check documents against requirements before going to immigration. In fact we printed the requirements and took them with us so we could point out why they might want something not noted.

    That said, I understand BB's angst and his rant. No one likes to enter any govt office and then have issues with documents and be sent away or have to negotiate. I never liked it in the states and do not here. I have told other expats here when they asked me about visa's and visa extensions do not just skim over the requirements.

    As for the immigration guy requesting money to make it go away and be done, they have a hotline that you can call to complain. At the Lampang immigration they have numerous wall signs that Bribes and gifts are not accepted. So it is definitely on the up and up. I assume that someone probably complained affecting change worrying they might get a complaint and lose their job. But as has been said, every immigration office operates differently. So you have to be prepared.

    Like others though, if you want to avoid all the potential issues, use a broker. For some this is a good solution. I like doing it so I can stay aligned and know the system.

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpy View Post
    At the Lampang immigration they have numerous wall signs that Bribes and gifts are not accepted. So it is definitely on the up and up.
    You're new here aren't you

  21. #21
    CCBW Stumpy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Headworx View Post
    You're new here aren't you
    Yeah 14years now. Still a rookie.

    I have had my various immigration issue over the years. My worst office was Hua Hin. It was all about bribes, gifts and it was a dump. However a lot of the expats there were suspect.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyrille View Post
    Funds need to be in the bank for two months before the application.

    That's it.

    Not corruption.

    Not difficult staff.

    If you're just using this place to vent then all well and good, but don't be confused about where the problem was.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpy View Post
    I agree Cyrille. All the requirements are clearly defined. It isn't corruption.

    Like others though, if you want to avoid all the potential issues, use a broker. For some this is a good solution. I like doing it so I can stay aligned and know the system.

    You 2 are both full of it. Yes he couldn't go the 'money in the bank" route but that's why he asked to change to the income method for which he did have the necessary paperwork, so why didn't they change it for him because a change = pay me to make change.

    I hate the fact that they now have "clerks" do all the paper shuffling and vet checks prior to it all being put on the desk of the TIO. They will not deviate from what they have been told to do as they don't want to get a rocket from their boss and then the TIO will not deviate because they doesn't want to get into trouble with their superior either. So the problem then becomes no room to accept that sometimes you have to use your brain and think.

    I had one occasion where the "clerk" said to me "no can do, not enough money in bank," I replied to her that I was not doing extension for a retirement visa but rather for a married to a Thai visa. I could see she was thinking about making an issue but my missus stepped in because she no me and the fact that i don't deal with idiots very well.

    I readily admit that one time it was my fault as I stupidly thought the Visa was initially issued for a year not 3 months, so when I turned up do my 90 day report they said can't do your Visa expires in 3 days. I asked them if I could do an extension and they told me not enough time so i booked a flight back to Australia and started again.

    Last year the 'clerk" wanted a certified copy of my marriage certificate, I argued that we didn't need it as the Kor Ror 22 (I think that is what its called) covered that as in order to register the marriage at the Amphor we provided the certified copy which the Amphor kept. So we went to the other office and no issues.

    A month ago I was doing my latest extension and same again, the reason being the guy in the other office who knows me was at a meeting and that office was closed. The Missus explained to the TIO and all was revealed when the TIO stated "I just don't want to get in trouble from above". Then when he was processing the extension request the system was going so slow that he couldn't check whether i had a criminal record or not and he wasn't willing to sign off until he'd checked but my wife assured him I was OK so he signed off. Got home and he called the missus to ask me to come back because he had forgotten to take my photo. She sent him one but he then asked if we had forgotten to pay the electricity bill as it was so dark. So the next day off I went, its 70km's to get tp the office from our place.

    So IMHO the problem is that Thai's are taught to obey not think! Sometimes I also think that is why they hate westerners because these foreigners are teaching some people to think and ask questions.

    Hope if you read all of this you didn't have something important to do.
    Last edited by ootai; 24-01-2023 at 06:40 PM.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpy View Post
    Yeah 14years now. Still a rookie.
    Being a "rookie" isn't the issue its the fact that you are a short American.
    I suppose it could be worse you could have been born in the UK.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    Life is too short for this kind of aggravation.
    It is indeed and sorry this one jumped out to bite you. I have had mixed experiences at different offices and the one time I ran into a brick wall and running out of time I was very stressed so I went to an agent and by that afternoon I had my retirement visa. Renewals have been painless to do in person because my local office is very small and the staff are very helpful. Occasionally they have trainees doing that triage function at the front door and they are worse than useless, I just nod and smile and work through it.
    I try to keep my gf out of things. She is a good person but when dealing with bureacracy things always seems to get more difficult with her there. When I renewed my driving licence the woman there told me my Thai was good enough and next time come alone.

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckaroo Banzai View Post
    Now I am even more confused, because, Now when this extension expires It would have been 2.5 months visa exempt, + 3 months Non O + two month Non O extension = 7.5 months before I get a 1 year extension.
    Is that possible?
    So it turns out, it's not possible and they screwed up.
    This morning I get a call, "Sorry we made a mistake yesterday " ( I know!! a Thai admitting they made a mistake)
    Anyway, "Come back to the office and we will figure it out" they said to my wife.
    So I went back to the office, They said " Don't worry about the bank deposit being late two days, come back the 10th , youl pay two days overstay, and we will do the extension then"
    I asked if I would be in any trouble for doing a two day overstay, they said NO and showed me the regulation concerning overstay. It stated that if you overstayed 90 days you get blacks for a Year,
    By now I am exhausted with this thing and said , OK.
    Will post the tenth and tell you how it worked out, , if in Jail please bring me cigarettes

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