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Thailand Tourist Visa - All You Need to Know

From the numerous ornate temples and old ruins to the delightful water markets, cutting-edge cities, and pristine white sand beaches-Thailand has a lot to offer tourists.

To enter Thailand, a tourist visa is a must for travelers. When a visitor arrives at Thailand's airport, it is stamped on their passport. It can also be issued by a Thai embassy or consulate in the applicant’s country.

Travelers who want to stay in Thailand longer can extend their tourist visas while there. The tourist visa, which is valid for 15 or 30 days, cannot be utilized for professional or business travel. It can also be renewed for 30 days if necessary.

Do You Need a Tourist Visa?

A tourist visa is required for visitors from outside Thailand who are there for leisure, sightseeing, or vacation. Hence, the most popular type of visa that travelers request is a Thailand tourist visa.

The kind of visa required for entry into Thailand also depends on many variables, including the applicant’s country, the purpose of their visit, and the length of their stay.

All foreign tourists, however, are required to present a valid passport, return tickets, and enough cash to cover their stay-related charges.

A tourist visa can also be obtained by any ordinary passport holder who wants to enter the Kingdom for any of the following reasons:

  • Tourism
  • Visiting Thai relatives for a brief stay
  • Proof of medical care being provided by licensed hospitals.
  • Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, and Exhibitions (MICE) participants supported by TCEB

Tourist Visa Exemption Scheme

Not everyone needs a tourist visa.

The Tourist Visa Exemption Scheme allows nationals of various nations and territories to visit Thailand without a visa for stays of up to 30 days as long as their sole intent is to engage in tourism. As of August 29, 2014, they have the option to extend their stay for an additional 30 days.

The following countries' nationals are eligible for the program and may enter Thailand through any port of entry:

  • Singapore
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Brunei

The following nationalities are also eligible for the program, although they are only allowed two visa-free entries each calendar year while traveling to Thailand by land or water. There is no restriction when flying into Thailand.

  • Australia
  • Andorra
  • Austria
  • Czech Republic
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • Germany
  • France
  • Greece
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Hungary
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Kuwait
  • Liechtenstein
  • Latvia
  • Luxembourg
  • Japan
  • Lithuania
  • Maldives
  • Monaco
  • Mauritius
  • New Zealand
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Poland
  • Philippines
  • Bahrain
  • Portugal
  • Qatar
  • San Marino
  • Slovenia
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Slovakia
  • South Africa
  • Switzerland
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Turkey
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • Ukraine
  • United States

Unless travelers are nationals of a country exempt from visa requirements or a nation whose citizens are eligible for visas on arrival or eVisa, tourists visiting Thailand must get a visa from one of the Thai diplomatic missions.

How to Apply for A Thai Tourist Visa?

Depending on the applicant’s nationality, foreigners who wish to go to Thailand or engage in other leisure activities may need to apply for a Thailand tourist visa. Thai tourist visas are only valid for short periods and do not entail any kind of employment obligation or other forms of payment.

Travelers can get a Thailand tourist visa by going to a Thai diplomatic mission in their country. Many people do that, and depending on how quickly the processing takes, they receive their visas.

However, some visitors choose to get their visas on arrival. Alternatively, travelers can also apply for the Thai eVisa on Arrival.

Tourists can apply for a single-entry visa if they intend to visit Thailand as a tourist for a period of time longer than 30 days.

A single-entry tourist visa has a three-month validity period starting on the day it is issued. This means that travelers have three months from the date they receive the visa to enter Thailand to use it. A single stay of no more than 60 days is permitted for the holder.

On the other hand, the requirement for the eVisa applicants to personally present their passports and original supporting documents at the Royal Thai Embassy/Consulate is no longer in effect as of September 26, 2021.

Applicants receive a confirmation email once their eVisa application has been approved. When traveling to Thailand, travelers must print a copy of the confirmation email to show to the airline and Thai immigration officials for any necessary checks.

Required Documents to apply for a Thailand tourist visa:

  • A passport or other travel document that is valid for at least six months.
  • A recent six-month-old photo of the candidate.
  • Documents proving that the airfare from Thailand was fully paid.
  • 20,000 Baht per person and 40,000 Baht per household as proof of sufficient funds.

For a list of specifically needed documents, it is advised to consult the website of the relevant embassy or consulate office.

How Long Can I Stay in Thailand with A Tourist Visa?

A visa can be used for three or six months. Travelers with Thailand tourist visas may be allowed to stay in Thailand for up to 60 days after arrival.

Travelers from 64 nations and territories are currently permitted to enter Thailand without a visa. With several of these nations, the Thai government continues to have bilateral visa waiver agreements. A visa on arrival or an eVisa is available to citizens of 18 countries.

Travelers can also apply for an eVisa or a visa on arrival. At major entry points by air or land, nationals of the following nations and territories may apply for a visa on arrival or eVisa, enabling them to enter Thailand for a stay of up to 15 days. It is not possible to extend a visa on arrival.

From October 2022 through March 2023, the validity of visas on arrival and eVisa has been temporarily increased for all eligible nations from 15 to 30 days.

  • Romania
  • Serbia
  • Taiwan
  • Georgia
  • India
  • Kazakhstan
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Nauru
  • New Guinea, Papua
  • Bhutan
  • Bulgaria
  • China
  • Cyprus
  • Ethiopia
  • Fiji
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vanuatu

How long Does it Take to Get the Visa?

The diplomatic representative office where visitors apply will determine how quickly their Thailand tourist visa will be processed. While some claim to process it in just two working days, others might need more time. 

However, from the time the embassy or consulate receives the applicant's entire application, one should plan on waiting for around 5 to 10 working days while the Thailand visa is processed. Therefore, it’s best to apply well in advance of the departure date.

How to Extend Your Tourist Visa?

Before traveling to Thailand, a person should apply for a tourist visa at a Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate if they want to stay there for longer than 30 days. 

The tourist visa has a 60-day initial stay limit and a validity period that changes depending on the number of entries allowed. 

According to Immigration Bureau Directive 327/2557, a tourist visa or a visa-free entrance may be renewed once for an extra 30 days after arriving in Thailand. For each extension, there is a cost of 1,900 Baht.

A request for authorization for an extension of stay must be made at the Office of Immigration Bureau, which is located at Chaengwattana Soi 7, Government Center B, Laksi, Bangkok 10210.

The immigration officer alone has the discretion to decide whether to grant a stay extension or change the type of visa.

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