A retirement visa requires you to deposit 65,000 Baht monthly into a Thai bank account. You may spend down that total amount each month but you must be able to show that a deposit is made each month for the 12-month period leading up to the time you apply for your yearly Thai retirement visa renewal.
Or you can make a non-interest bearing 800,000 Baht ($25,000 U.S.) deposit if you reside here alone or 400,000 Baht for those married to a Thai citizen. Three monthly prior to renewal, the full amount of 800,000 must clearly be on deposit in a bank and you must present the bank document to immigration for your visa renewal.
This means that you will not be required to show that you have retirement income of 65,000 coming in each month. If we assume that there are half a million foreign retirees here, then they will be lending the country $12.5 billion each year, interest free, which Thai banks lend this money out for interest income or profit. Nice work!
Below are some Thailand Retirement Visa Forms Download to speed you on your way, and here are some recent visa alternatives.
The Immigration Bureau has launched the e-Via on Arrival (E-VOA) system to cut visa processing time to as little as one minute. The new system has beentrialled at Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports since November 15 and is now available at Chiang Mai. You can request a visa on arrival in advance here anytime from 30 days to 24 hours in advance. Once you arrive you show your passport at specially marked counters and obtain your visa in just one minute.
There are now three main alternatives to the traditional twelve month retirement visa:
- The annual extension of stay based on a farang’s marriage to a Thai national. This is mainly used by expats under 50 who are too young to apply for the retirement option. It requires at least 400,000 baht in a Thai bank or proof of overseas income to the same amount. Application and renewal can be slow because of the substantial documentation required and the need to show that the marriage is not on the rocks or fake..
- The most popular option is the annual retirement visa which requires income or bank balances of at least 800,000 baht, the “extension of stay for retirement”, or O-A visa. Documentation is relatively straightforward. Total annual cost, with all bells and whistles, is around 15,000 Baht. The form to use is TM8
- The ten year visa– in fact two chunks of five years – requires a lot of complex paperwork including police clearance from your national police at home and possession of comprehensive Thai medical insurance–and foreign-based policies are ineligible. One disadvantage of X-O is that a sum of money from 1.8 million to three million baht has to be lodged in a Thai bank on a long-term basis. Nevertheless, some people feel much more secure with a visa option which does not require annual renewal and say that the bureaucracy is actually more hassle than the new 10 year visa.
- The Elite card. It requires a one-off payment of between 500,000 baht and two million baht for residency rights from 5- 20 years. You don’t have to do 90 days reporting in person: Elite does that and you don’t have to stand in long lines at the airport immigration. Other advantages include discounts on spas and golf courses and no need for annual, cumbersome paperwork. The Elite card is run by a company owned by the Thai tourist authority to serve high-end visitors and investors. It currently has 4,800 members, mostly from UK, China and Asean countries. There are various options for family membership. The Elite card is the most expensive to obtain but requires little documentation and certainly simplifies responsibilities with Thai immigration. Although it is true that Elite can handle the 90 days reporting on a customer’s behalf, this holds true only for those members living in major cities and not in rural areas. Elite membership networks are also useful for those needing work permits or investment introductions.
- Six Month Multiple Entry Tourist Visa: This gives travelers and digital nomads freedom to go where they wish, whenever they wish and not worry about visa expiration dates. Visit Bali for a weekend, Cambodia to see Angkor Wat, then to Saigon whenever you want and not have to worry about wasting of one of your entries on your visa. Play your cards right and you can squeeze up to 9 months: get the new visa two weeks before leave for Thailand–you must apply in a foreign country and the fee is around 10,000 Baht–and make sure you fly back to Thailand just before your six months expires. You can then extend it for another 30 days without leaving the country!
Thailand Retirement Visas Download Forms: Getting a retirement visa involves getting permanent residency in a new country, so it’s not a trivial matter.
The Thai government doesn’t know you from Adam and wants to protect its own citizens from evildoers (they have enough of their own, thank you) and deadbeats. So expect to jump through a few hoops before you’re settled. If the process seems daunting, use our one-day, 15,000-Baht Concierge Service and we’ll do the paperwork for you (plus get you a bank account, a home, licenses and other handy items).
Like most Asian countries, Thailand is very ‘place conscious’: they want to associate everyone in the Kingdom with a fixed place, a home. So every house in Thailand must maintain a ‘house book’ that records who lives there, for example. That’s why you must get your new landlord to fill out Form TM30, below: it proves that your lease (which you must also produce) is real and that you are listed in the landlord’s house book. It makes your landlord somewhat responsible for your whereabouts. But be of good cheer. Just click, download the form you need, fill it out and you’re good to go. Thailand Retirement Visas Download Forms:
Application for Visa on Arrival Download
For this you will need the following:
1. Passport with a minimum remaining validity of 30 days*
2. Return / onward journey air ticket for travel within the next 15 days
3.One passport size (4 x 6 cm) photo
4. Boarding card of the flight of arrival
5. Duly filled-in Visa on Arrival application (Thailand Visa on Arrival Application Form is given in this page below) and Arrival / Departure Card (provided during the flight)
6. Visa on Arrival fee of 2,000* Thai Baht to be paid in Thai currency only
(*Visa on arrival fee will be 1000 THB between December 1, 2016 and August 31, 2017)
7. Hotel address / other stay address in Thailand that can be verified
8. Hotel booking voucher (they have recently started asking for it)
9. Thai or other currency or ATM/debit card with bank balance equivalent to 10,000 Thai Baht per person or 20,000 Thai Baht per family
(* The minimum remaining validity of the passport is specified as 30 days at the LED display near the VOA counter at Don Mueang Airport Bangkok. Earlier the requirement used to be six months. I just hope the airline check-in counter employees and the immigration officials in your home country are also aware of it, otherwise you maybe denied boarding. Please use your discretion in this matter.)
Retirement Visa Application
This is generally called a ‘Retirement Visa’. It’s the fundamental form you’ll need to settle in Thailand. Use the TM8 form.
U.S. Consulate Affidavit FormU.S. Income Affidavit
Use this if you don’t want to bother using a bank statement to declare your assets or income. Fill out this form but do NOT sign it. Take it to the Consulate and sign it in the presence of a consular officer.
Change Passport Details US Passport Change Application
Use this if you get a new passport, or change your passport nationality.
Thai Residency Application Thai Residency Permit Application.
This is required for some transactions like applying for a driver’s license, buying a vehicle or condo or filling a Final Will. A Certificate of Residency is valid for 30 days, so most people apply at the time of need.Fill out the form then go directly to the Immigration office and they will verify it.
Proof of Residency: TM30 TM30 Proof of Permanent Residency Address
This must be filed by your landlord, not you, and updated every time you return from overseas or staying elsewhere in the country..
Change of Address: TM28Change of Address
Expats are required to keep their residential address current with the Immigration Service.
Re-Entry PermitApplication for Re-Entry
Use this when returning to Thailand.
The Thai Department of Immigration has proposed offering ten year retirement visas for those who can afford them. They’ll have a 5 year stamp followed by a 5 year extension, similar to the current Elite card visas. To qualify you need 3 million baht in your bank for 1 year or an income of over 100,000 baht monthly and proof of health insurance. I expect that it will be an optional upgrade, rather than a replacement for the current. 12-month renewable visas. The Department intends the new visa to boost medical tourism. The visa fee is 10,000 baht (S$400), he added. Apart from the age requirement–you must be at least 50 years old–the new visa requires eligible foreigners to have a monthly income of at least 100,000 baht or a bank deposit of at least 3 million baht, to be maintained for at least one year after receiving the visa along with health insurance coverage for at least US$1,000 (S$1,430) for outpatient care and US$10,000 for inpatient care per policy per year. But holders of the new visas will still be required to report to the immigration department every 90 days.
Thailand Retirement Visas Can be Difficult to Get, Harder to Keep.
Western countries can be relaxed about foreigners in their midst. Not Thailand. Thais know that their country is the most wonderful, beautiful place on earth, because that’s what they’re taught at school, and everyone on earth would like to live here. Given Thailand’s long, unmarked borders, the millions of immigrant laborers are too much trouble to keep track of. Besides, they do all the hard work (Thai unemployment is under 1%). So Immigration officers devote most of their attention to keeping track of farangs (white Europeans). If farangs’ papers are not in order, the reasoning goes, it’s likely that they’ll either be offered a bribe or get a commendation from the Bureau for catching the offender. The polite, smartly-uniformed (and very cute) officers found my papers were in order so we got to chatting. They were clearly curious about my standard of living. “How much do you pay for your house?” they enquired. “10,000 Baht”, I responded. They shook their heads in amazement. A single man living alone in a 3-bedroom house pays more in rent than the officers makes in salary! Farangs really are rich.
Sometimes getting a Thailand retirement visa turns into a nightmare. It can happen in any country, of course, but here are three Thai tales to amuse you:
#1. With all my documents in hand I visited the Thai consulate in Frankfurt yesterday. The lady at the counter was very helpful. Then she said that I needed to also provide a rental contract or a condo purchase contract. I have never heard or read of that requirement. I checked the Thai Embassy Germany website and there is no mention of that requirement as well. I know that I will need to find a place to rent, but this requirement creates some logistical issues as I will have to travel to Thailand in August/September of next year to find a place to rent and then return to Germany to submit all the paperwork for a Non-Immigrant Visa “O-A” (Long Stay). Have you ever heard of this? What are your thoughts and recommendations?
I recommended visiting again and approaching a different official, since Thai officials often make up their own requirements. Here’s his report: I did try to get another lady but when I came into the consulate there were plenty of Germans filling out paperwork and no one was in line in front of the three service windows. The first lady that showed up was the same one that I spoke with the previous week and no one was in line, so I went back up to her and asked her for clarification of the requirement of a rental contract or condo purchase contract in order to obtain a Non-Immigrant Visa “O-A” (Long Stay). She stated that it was in fact a requirement, I replied that it is not shown on the Thai consulate Frankfurt website, the Thai embassy Berlin website, or the Thai embassy Washington, D.C. website. Her initial response was that I should apply for my visa through the one in Washington, D.C.. I then stated that I didn’t see the rental/condo purchase requirement on the main Thai website either. She left and went around the corner out of sight.
When she returned she stated that it was the Thai consulate Frankfurt’s requirement and they could add additional requirements. I then asked her where is this requirement written and she replied that the website should be updated in a 2-3 weeks. I explained that this requirement creates some logistical challenges. I asked her how would a person get a rental contract on a tourist visa. She then replied that many people that come into this consulate have been to Thailand many times and they know the area they want to stay. I then replied that I do know the area, it is Bangkok. She then said that it Bangkok is a big area and where would I want to live. I said it would be near the school that I select to attend Thai language training. She followed that by stating I need a rental contract. I asked if a 6 month hotel reservation suffice and she said no it would not. I smiled the entire time and was respectful. I just tried to understand this requirement and how I would meet it in order to get a long stay visa. I even politely asked if I could speak to someone else. She leaned over and spoke to an older lady and then replied to me that she is the visa official.
I will not continue to bore you with what became a circular discussion. Toward the end of the discussion she stated that I should go there on a 90 day visa and then get a one year extension. I asked her if he one year extension is the same as a long stay visa. She then stated that I should get a retirement visa. I told her that was what I was trying to do with the a Non-Immigrant Visa “O-A” (Long Stay) and I asked her if that is the retirement visa. She stated that “you could sort of call it that.” As an engineer I only thought about that comment, thinking well it is the retirement visa or it is not. “Sort of” is not definitive. After she stated that she then she brought the conversation back to the rental/condo purchase requirement. I apologized for my confusion and thanked her for her time and left smiling.
#2. I have been in Thailand for many years and am particular to “do the right thing” when it comes to visa. However I finished working last April, so I visited my local immigration office to see about going onto a retirement visa. I was told this was simple, leave the country and come back in on a 15 day tourist visa, and then go back to the same immigration office and take all the paperwork, bank statement and supporting documents with me for a retirement visa. This I did and was duly given a visa stamped RETIREMENT.and I paid the required fee. I never checked the dates on the stamp, an error on my part.
Anyhow they has stapled a slip into the passport which asked me to go back in on the 30th July, the issue date of the visa was the 14th May, I couldn;t work this out, so in early July I returned to the office to ask them was this correct. The woman said no, you don’t have to worry about that and she removed the slip and binned it. just come back when the the visa expires. remember that I didn’t check the dates and in my mind it would have been May 2015.
All my friends on the same visa and reporting every 90 days, and I am worried, so come September I again attend the immigration, pass over the passport and ask them do I need to report, same reply, no, come back when your visa is up. I have witnesses to both these visits.
Today, I attend the immigration with friends who are renewing their retirement for another year, I decide to have another go as to my not needing to report like my friends. The woman looks at the passport and I am told I do not have a current visa, I go through the scenario several times, but you know the story you can never get anything across that they don’t want to hear. When I said that the first visit the woman had torn the slip out and thrown it away, I was told that was impossible and in fact they went to great lengths to tell me that I had applied for and been given a 90 day Non O and I should have gone back in and applied for the retirement visa. By this stage the supervisor was out and so was the head woman who followed me outside.
I am now 8 months overstay. They told me to do a border run to Myanmar tomorrow, (my closest point) come back in on a 15 day tourist visa and then go to the immigration in Bangkok get a 90 day Non O and 60 days into that go and see them with all the necessary paperwork for a RETIREMENT visa.
Not only that they tell me anything over a 90 day overstay can lead to being banned from Thailand for 12 months, but this won’t happen to me tomorrow as they are just introducing it and not enforcing it at present.
The other thing I can’t understand with this new request is why do I have to travel to Bangkok to get a 90 day Non O when they are saying thats what they gave me in Kanchanaburi last year. As you can appreciate I am quite worried aout going to Myanmar tomorrow, as I am not at all sure they will let me back in. I firmly believe they put the incorrect dates in the passport, and if as they say I had only originally applied for a 90 day Non O why did I have to present the bank statement and financials adding up to the 800,000 requirement.
#3. On Monday 30th June I went to the Thai Immigration centre in soi Suan Phlu, Satorn. I had entered Thailand on the 8th of April on a Full O/A one year visa, but as this was my first 90 day report, I wanted to leave plenty of time in case there were any problems.
Not being exactly sure what I would need to make my 90 day report with, I took more or less every relevant piece of paperwork I had. I also took my fiancee with me, to confirm that I was living at her house…
When I arrived at the immigration centre, I joined the information queue, to find out exactly where I should go… the woman behind the counter looked at my passport, visa and entry stamp… she gave me a queue number and and a form to fill in, and pointed me to the longest queue in the building… my number was 40 places down the queue, which moved at anagonisingly slow pace… then all the immigration officers went to lunch… as I looked around the queue, I was suprised to see many entire families, with Dads clutching a whole sheaf of documentation… often several inches thick. Eventually the staff returned from their lesurely lunch break, and started interviewing people again… by this time about 2 hours had passed and only five places had changed in the queue… I asked a chap if this was the 90 day report queue. He replied “No Mate… this is to apply for a visa extension… we have to do this every year” I explained that I had a full O/A visa, and was only there to do a 90 day report… “You’re in the wrong Queue Mate”, he replied, “That queue’s next door, it only takes about 10 minutes”
Heaving a sigh of relief, I collected my fiancee and my heap of paperwork, and went back to the information queue by the entrance : ” I just need to make a 90 day report” I explained… “No, Wrong visa : Cannot report, You need to get new visa” Was her response… I couldn’t understand this at all, as my full O/A, multiple entry visa was supposed to be the all singing all dancing version, which entitled me to stay in the kingdom, and report every 90 days without doing border runs… I had sweated blood to obtain this visa in London, and gone to a lot of trouble to assemble the qualifying paperwork, and then get it all notorised by a solicitor…
Convinced that She had misunderstood, I waited for her to become involved with another customer, and asked her collegue for a number for the 90 day report queue… this was issued, along with a different form….
I filled in this shorter, and much simpler form, and within 20 minutes my number was called : I stepped up and handed over my passport and form, and braced myself for the inevitable grilling… ” No Good : I cannot stamp this Passport : Wrong Visa!” was the response…
It was at this stage that I nearly lost it bigtime… I knew that I had the right visa… but two immigration officials had now refused it… I had one week before my 90 days were up, and I would have to leave… if I couldn’t sort this out. Several harried ciggies and a lot of muttering later, I rejoined the origional queue… fortunately I had retained my origional queue number, and only had to wait one more hour before this number was called…
The lady behind the desk studied my form and passport with interest : “What you do today?” she asked me… ” I have sat in various queues here at immigration today”I replied, and managed to summon up a smile.
“No :What you DO?” She asked again… then the penny dropped… ” I am retired… I don’t work here in Thailand” I replied…
“OK, You need new visa : You need letter from embassy, say you have enough money, you need docter letter, you need Thai Bank account, You need photocopy passport, and photos… ” I asked what was wrong with my origional visa, ” Visa no good, you need change for retirement visa. This visa expire monday”
I was hurled into the depths of despondancy : Three months work obtaining the origional visa in London down the drain… I knew that I didn’t have time to complete the application process again before monday… “Can I border run, and get another 90 days?” |I asked her… “No, Visa no good, not let you back in” Was her response… ” Go get letter from embassy about money, come back tomorrow… come straight to my desk… not queue again” she kindly told me…
Wearily, I and my fiancee left the building… I was not a happy bunny. I couldn’t understand what the problem was with my full O/A visa, and my lack of comprehension made me very angry… mostly with myself.
The following day, I attended the UK embassy,Filled in yet another form, and showed my bank statements, and income. “OK sir, we’ll have the letter ready for you tomorrow…” Whilst I was there I applied for my “Affirmation of freedom to Marry”, although by that stage I was wondering if I would be in Thailand long enough to attend my own wedding.
“No Worries sir, that will also be ready tomorrow : That will be 5800 Baht please… ”
Bloody hel_l, I thought… I thought the Thais knew how to charge for paperwork… this lot evidently tought them how!…
There was no point in going back to the immigration office until I had the letter, and it was My fiancee’s daughters birthday,,, I resolved to make it the happiest day I could, as I could see some bad days on the horizon… As I headed down to the place to get a cab, I bumped into a monk, and thrust 200 Baht at him : “Tam Boon” I said, and left him rather confused… two beggers also struck lucky… as I figured I needed all the merit I could gain with the gods, spirits, or lady luck…
That evening, I went on the internet, and tried to figure out what I had done wrong with my Visa… needless to say, just about every website contradicted every other website on some details… and all seemed intent on selling me an expensive deal with representation… I photocopied every page of my passport, as most of the sites suggested this, and prepared to go dressed in suit and tie, ordering another 8.00 am taxi…
Wednesday morning I and my fiancee attended the UK embassy again, Picked up the financial letter, which seemed to be fine, and the Affirmation of freedom to marry.
Taking a dog leg to a photocopiers, and making two copies of the embassy letter, We headed back to the Immigration Office, filled with dread and forboding… I had no doctors letter, and no Thai Bank account… I could only hope for the best.
When We arrived back at the immigration office I joined the information queue again… even though the lady at desk 17 had asked my to go directly to her… with my luck, I thought, she wouldn’t be in today, and I’d better have a number in the queue to be on the safe side…
Behind the desk sat an altogether more impressive immigration officer, covered in decorations and obviously master of all he surveyed.
He took my passport… ” Sir This Passsport has wrong stamp…” My heart faltered again… ” The Immigration officer at the airport has only stamped this passport for 90 days… he should have stamped it for a whole year… I’m very sorry sir… Please take it to desk 519, and the stamp will be corrected”
My heart started to beat again… Light at the end of the tunnel!
At desk 519 the young lady cheerfully corrected the stamp, and suggested that I make my 90 day report :” Only 3 more days sir… Why not do it today?”
Ten minutes later, and one very simple form later, I was at the report desk, ” OK Sir, no problem”. Not a single question about my address or finances…
Then I was out of the building, secure in the knowledge that I had obtained the correct visa in the first place, and that I now had 9 more months before I had to do my visa extension paperwork again…
So all I can suggest is : Make merit, as often as you can…After all that, I’ve now managed to lose the piece of paper that was given to me after making my report… so I guess I’m in for a 2000 baht fine…Murg.
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