Visa for Thailand
A foreign national who wants to enter the Kingdom of Thailand must apply for a visa from a Royal Thai Embassy or a Royal Thai Consulate-General. However, citizens of certain nations do not require a visa if they meet the visa waiver requirements as follows:
- They are citizens of nations that are exempt from the visa requirement when they enter Thailand for tourist purposes. These citizens will be permitted to stay in the Kingdom of Thailand for a period not exceeding 30 days.
- They are nationals of countries which have concluded bilateral visa waiver agreements with Thailand.
Some nationalities can apply for a visa upon arrival in Thailand. Travelers with this type of visa are allowed to enter and stay in Thailand for a period not exceeding 15 days.
Citizens of some nations are required to obtain a visa only at the Royal Thai Embassy or the Consulate General of Thailand in the country of residence of the applicant, or at the Embassy of Thailand which has jurisdiction over their country of residence. Visitors are advised to inquire at the visa issuing office at any Royal Thai Embassy or Royal Thai Consulate-General before departure.
Note that the period of validity of the visa is different from the period of stay. The validity of the visa is the period during which a visa can be used to enter Thailand. In general, the validity of a visa is 3 months, but in some cases, visas can be issued to be valid for six months, one year or three years. The validity of a visa is granted with discretion by the Royal Thai Embassy or theConsulate General of Thailand and is indicated on the visa sticker.
However, the lengthof stay is granted by an immigration officer upon arrival at the port of entry and depending on the type of visa. For example, the length of stay for a transit visa does not exceedthirty days, for a tourist visa it does not exceed sixty days, and for a non-immigrant visa, it does not exceed ninety days from the date of arrival. The length of stay granted by the immigration officer is indicated on the arrival stamp.
Travelers entering Thailand is not permitted to work, regardless of their visa type, except they get a work permit. Applicants who plan to work in Thailand should hold the appropriate type of visa to apply for a work permit.
According to the Immigration Law of Thailand, B.E. (1979), visitors who fall into one of the following classes are banned from entering Thailand:
- Not having a valid passport or a valid document used in place of a passport; or having a valid passport or document used in place of the passport without a valid visa issued by Royal Thai Embassies, Royal Thai Consulates-General or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, except those who meet the requirements of visa exemption.
- Having no adequate means of subsistence after entering the Kingdom of Thailand.
- Having entered the Kingdom of Thailand to be employed as an unskilled or untrained worker or working in violation of the law on foreigners’ work permits.
- Mentally unstable or have any of the conditions listed in the ministerial regulations.
- Not yet immunized against smallpox, or undergone any other clinical treatment to protect against disease, and having refused that these vaccinations be administered by the immigration health worker.
- Having been jailed by a decision of the Thai court, or by the legal judgment of the Court of foreign nations, unless when the penalty imposed is for a petty offense or negligence.
- Reason to believe that entry into the Kingdom of Thailand is aimed to be involved in prostitution, trafficking in women or children, drug trafficking or other types of trafficking that are contrary to public morals and human rights.
- Be expelled by the government of Thailand or that of other foreign countries, or having been revoked from the right of residence in the Kingdom of Thailand or abroad; or have been expelled from the Kingdom of Thailand by competent officials under Thai Government unless an exemption has been granted by the Minister on an individual basis.