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Thai tourism in trouble: And competitor Vietnam is "scary" for Pattaya


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On 9/5/2019 at 1:54 PM, chrissables said:

A Thai licence (ASEAN) is accepted.

It may be accepted by police, but I was thinking more along the lines of medical insurance, should you have an accident. 

 

Does your insurance company say riding in Vietnam on a Thai license is riding legally in Vietnam? 

 

Last I heard, Vietnam didn't recognize International Driving Permits either.

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Exchange rate is bad, costs are going up, visas are getting a lot harder to get, and more competitive alternatives are arising.   it isn't really surprising stuff. Thailand ain't that cheap

Taxi company I use for my biz was always somewhat arrogant but did the job so stuck with them.   the other week was going away myself, owner was crying how quite it is.    Anyhow a

That´s great news! Maybe the bigger part of all foreign criminalty in Thailand can move to Vietnam too. Then this nice country can go back to what it once was.

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On 8/28/2019 at 12:49 AM, Seeall said:

never give AU banks the chance, they have craprates..... move AU to Thai holding account.. check charts and rates and exchange when it is up... costs AUD 23 and 22 THB this end...

You would have to transfer quite a lot of money to get your $23AUD + 22THB transfer fees back, to make use of a Thai bank's slightly better rates. 

 

Worth doing if you were buying a property here, but probably not worth it if only coming for a 2 week holiday. 

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I'd suggest if your planning a long term retirement move to Vietnam you really find out the current visa situation from those living there as everything I'm reading from expat Vietnam residents is that the government are currently clamping down on the issuance of 1 year visas to anyone but Americans. You'll get 3 months for sure and someone I know was offered his 6 month visa, ( reduced from a 1 year previously ), for $650 which he refused and is now leaving. If you can't get a 1 year you can't open a bank account and I guess obtain a driving licence much like here in Thailand. If you are worried about Thailand it looks currently very much like out of the frying pan into the fire as far as Vietnam is concerned.

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On 8/26/2019 at 8:32 PM, Leaver said:

Do you think your experience is indicative of many? 

 

Check out the activity on the visa forum over the last 6 months. 

 

Actually my experience and those of my circle of retired friends was exactly the same. I went back last month to show my bank book balance staying above the required 90 days after visa issuance and I didn't even need a ticket from the front desk, in and out in a couple of minutes with a pleasant " see you next year " from the IO.

 

If the numbers thin out because of those unwilling or unable to meet current requirement, the weakness of their home currencies relative to the baht, weakness in tourist numbers and the wider economy given the massive drop in Foreign Direct Investment reported I'm more optimistic than pessimistic that it will remain fairly straightforward to stay here.

 

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, kinyara said:

I'd suggest if your planning a long term retirement move to Vietnam you really find out the current visa situation from those living there as everything I'm reading from expat Vietnam residents is that the government are currently clamping down on the issuance of 1 year visas to anyone but Americans. You'll get 3 months for sure and someone I know was offered his 6 month visa, ( reduced from a 1 year previously ), for $650 which he refused and is now leaving. If you can't get a 1 year you can't open a bank account and I guess obtain a driving licence much like here in Thailand. If you are worried about Thailand it looks currently very much like out of the frying pan into the fire as far as Vietnam is concerned.

The only accurate part of your post is Americans get a 1 year multiple entry tourist visa for around $195USD.  No other hoops to jump through.

 

The rest of your post is inaccurate.

 

1 year visas are currently on hold.  There is no crackdown.  I expect them to be available again in the future.

 

You get a 3 month multiple entry visa for around $70USD.  This can be renewed 3 times inside Vietnam.  That totals a 1 year stay. 

 

After that 1 year, you have to leave, but can come straight back again.  There is no "back to back" or "too many tourist visas" BS like in Thailand.  Many expats are living in Vietnam this way.

 

The married expats get a 5 year multiple entry visa for around $50USD. 

 

Bank account and drivers license can be obtained with a 3 month tourist visa, and foreigners can own property in a similar style as foreigners own land in Thailand. 

 

 

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9 hours ago, kinyara said:

 

Actually my experience and those of my circle of retired friends was exactly the same. I went back last month to show my bank book balance staying above the required 90 days after visa issuance and I didn't even need a ticket from the front desk, in and out in a couple of minutes with a pleasant " see you next year " from the IO.

 

If the numbers thin out because of those unwilling or unable to meet current requirement, the weakness of their home currencies relative to the baht, weakness in tourist numbers and the wider economy given the massive drop in Foreign Direct Investment reported I'm more optimistic than pessimistic that it will remain fairly straightforward to stay here.

 

 

 

 

Don't you mean "see you in 90 days?" 

 

There is a big difference between "unwilling" and "unable" to meet current requirements.  I know some snowbirds that are simply unwilling to comply, and now holiday in Vietnam. 

 

You can be as optimistic as you like about being able to remain in Thailand, but Vietnam has a pay as you go visa system.  Pay your money, here's your visa.  That's it.  No other hoops to jump through.  Now that's what I call "straightforward."  🙂

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On 8/28/2019 at 12:01 AM, tideout said:

One of the most common scams here in the Ben Thanh market area is to give a certain colored shopping bag to tourists who've come through and bought something a specifically colored shopping bag. This bag indicates another shop has marked them as suckers for a big up-sell.

This is an urban myth that exists for every SE Asian country. I remember hearing of pink bags in Phuket to let the other merchants know that the tourist is an easy mark. I suspect this type of monkey business has happened, but I really don't think it's a common thing.  

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1 hour ago, Leaver said:

The only accurate part of your post is Americans get a 1 year multiple entry tourist visa for around $195USD.  No other hoops to jump through.

 

The rest of your post is inaccurate.

 

1 year visas are currently on hold.  There is no crackdown.  I expect them to be available again in the future.

 

You get a 3 month multiple entry visa for around $70USD.  This can be renewed 3 times inside Vietnam.  That totals a 1 year stay. 

 

After that 1 year, you have to leave, but can come straight back again.  There is no "back to back" or "too many tourist visas" BS like in Thailand.  Many expats are living in Vietnam this way.

 

The married expats get a 5 year multiple entry visa for around $50USD. 

 

Bank account and drivers license can be obtained with a 3 month tourist visa, and foreigners can own property in a similar style as foreigners own land in Thailand. 

 

 

Thanks for the ACCURATE info, far too much BS from people that have no <deleted> idea what they are talking about.

same as the last post about giving customers a coloured bag.

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On 8/28/2019 at 10:33 AM, Leaver said:

Sure, but one of the many golden rules of Thailand, and South East Asia in general, is pay as you go. 

 

I am not moving 21,000GBP into an unstable country, and lose access to 10,500GBP of it, which only earns around 1.5%, just so I can do my own retirement visa and extensions. 

 

 

I disagree.  I will not let the Thai government lock up my money.  Simple as that. 

 

I will not be forced to inject 800k into the Thai banking system.  I will happily leave Thailand, with no complaints, if that becomes the only option to remain here.

 

Yes, using agents makes it easier, and probably cheaper, when you consider my 21,000GBP is earning way more than 1.5% sitting in a Thai bank, and I keep control of it. 

 

It will be interesting if they allow them to continue to operate, not only this first year, but for next year. 

 

I have spoken to a lot of people who have used agents this year, and at this stage, there's been no problems. 

 

I admit I was lazy with the 65,000 baht method.  I easily meet this criteria, but after reading about it has to be a certain transfer code, you have to bring your bank book every 90 days, and all the other BS, I decided to either use an agent here, or go to Vietnam. If I decide to stay, I will use an agent the first year, and start on the 65,000 baht method. 

 

I know the practice of using an agent for this purpose is illegal, so not too happy about it, but This Is Thailand. 

 

Vietnam does not have any of this money in the bank requirements.  Pay your money, here's your visa. It's a lot easier.  You do have to leave once a year, but that's no problem for me. 

 

 

"you have to bring your bank book every 90 days"

Where do you have to bring your bank book every 90 days? 

There's no such requirement.

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2 minutes ago, Max69xl said:

"you have to bring your bank book every 90 days"

Where do you have to bring your bank book every 90 days? 

There's no such requirement.

There are reports that certain immigration offices require expats to bring their bank book to the office when doing their 90 day report. 

 

This is to see the expats haven't gone under the 800k during the seasoning period, and under the 400k at any point throughout the year.

 

This has been the topic of a few threads recently.

 

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24 minutes ago, Max69xl said:

Where do you have to bring your bank book every 90 days? 

There's no such requirement.

 

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5 hours ago, Leaver said:

This is to see the expats haven't gone under the 800k during the seasoning period, and under the 400k at any point throughout the year.

 

This has been the topic of a few threads recently

I have heard of this happening 3 months after extension renewal in Jomtiem, Chiang Rai and some other place. But not elsewhere, nor beyond the 3 months, checking for the 400k. And I pore over this forum a good bit. 

Also it is not usually associated with the regular 90 day report. Some smaller IOs attempted to realign the 90 day report so that the 800k check could be done at the same time.

At this time, needing your bank book to do 90 day reports is not likely.

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11 hours ago, Leaver said:

The only accurate part of your post is Americans get a 1 year multiple entry tourist visa for around $195USD.  No other hoops to jump through.

 

The rest of your post is inaccurate.

 

1 year visas are currently on hold.  There is no crackdown.  I expect them to be available again in the future.

 

You get a 3 month multiple entry visa for around $70USD.  This can be renewed 3 times inside Vietnam.  That totals a 1 year stay. 

 

 

 

Not at all in fact you have just reiterated what I said, you cannot get a 1 year visa.  " Currently on hold ", ( when is a clampdown not a clampdown ), and I expect them to be available again in the future - well I guess we can sleep easy because you have a feeling it might be available in the future, care to put a timeframe on your expectation, what have those in charge personally told you  ?

 

3 months is what I stated you will get and you agreed. However you point out for the benefit of those who find it inconvenient and a massive hoop to do a 5 minute visit to Thai immigration every 90 days you can have the pleasure of renewing that 3 month visa in Vietnam every 90 days for the cost of a Thai retirement visa each time.  Sounds great.

 

PS Retirement bank balance only required to be shown once 90 days after visa issue in Jomtien, since you're a stickler for accuracy.

 

Anyway I wish you luck in Vietnam, no point remaining in a country where a few photocopies and an hour of your time a year is such a hardship for you. When are your leaving ?

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I leave Thailand in 5 weeks, will still come to visit every now and then.

 

Why spend 30k USD on Elite and plan my life ahead for 20 years when I can live in other countries who have developed a lot too. Pay as you go as someone here said before is also my thinking. Pay as you go was possible in some way for younger people with ED visa but now stopped.

 

For many retirees I think you complain on a high level; just deposit the 800k (it is still your money when you decide to leave)  - you have really no reasons to complain. Easy to get a visa.

 

Vietnam and Philippines both have easy visa. Philippines has SRRV visa starting at age 35; either invest in a condo or deposit 20k USD in bank. Second one is similar to retirement visa in TH when you lock some of your money, but I do not need to be 50 years old or buy myself into the Elite program.

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