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CangguSurfer

ED Visa PROBLEMS in Laos! Any recent experiences / advice?

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So, I am applying for a ED Visa at end of this month, and have been told by my school that there is now a serious problem getting them approved by the Laos Consulates.  In the last few weeks, many students are being rejected according to the school.  They say they will be trying to figure out alternative consulates that are being more receptive, and will be back in touch with me next week.

 

Apparently, the problem is that the Laos consulates are being overwhelmed with ED VIsa requests, and all visa requests in general simply because it is the closest and most popular location for foreigners who are already in Thailand and wish to extend their stay here.  So, my understanding is that it is not anything related specifically to a general crackdown on ED Visas themselves.

 

They did tell me that Hong Kong and Myanmar consulates are no longer viable options.  Even if I were to return to my home country (USA), their experience has been that certain consulates are very difficult (like Washington DC), so I'm really in a quandary on what to do.

 

I'm beginning to think that the ED Visa may not have been the wisest choice for extending my stay here for the next 9 months, and may go back to my original idea of just applying for a 60 day Tourist VIsa (extending it locally to 90 days), and repeating that a few times once my "retirement" visa expires at the end of this month.

 

It would really be helpful if any recent applicants for ED Visas at ANY consulates could share their experience, or if some of the wiser ThaiVisa members (like @ubonjoe) might offer some advice on how to deal with all of this in the most efficient and least problematic way.  I'm sure I'm not the only one who would benefit from this advice.

 

Edited by CangguSurfer

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If it's your first ever Ed visa and you've been in Thailand less than 6 months in the last 12 you might be ok in Laos. But yes there are lots of threads recently about people denied especially if they don't meet those criteria, you can probably find with a search. Some were even denied with less of a visa history than that and / or told their school has been blacklisted completely. Some people are now applying in Vietnam instead. 

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God, it's really saddening to hear continuous stories like this. I always wonder what the country would be like if the elections went in another direction.

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Hanoi is also out. There was a lot of talk about this a couple of weeks ago.

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1 hour ago, CangguSurfer said:

It's all very hard to understand.  I mean, I can appreciate them denying a visa if they think the applicant might be secretly seeking to work in Thailand, or that they don't have the financial means to live here, but that doesn't seem to be the case.  It's just arbitrary, and there are no unified criteria among the different Consulates.  Each seems to have their own set of rules, and they are constantly changing from one day to the next.

 

They are apparently seeking to reduce the number of long-staying foreigners by all means without explicitly saying so. This is the general policy at the moment, and it is understandable.

 

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2 hours ago, CangguSurfer said:

Perhaps it's just time to move on to a place like Vietnam where foreigners are valued

Won't last too long (if currently the case at all)

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19 minutes ago, MaksimMislavsky said:

They are apparently seeking to reduce the number of long-staying foreigners by all means without explicitly saying so. This is the general policy at the moment, and it is understandable.

 

I think the exact same question was asked by Waverider a while ago. Both of you wanted another 9 months. You should ask him how he solved his dilemma. It appears that the Ed visa route won't work for a visa from private schools. I'm sure students at accredited universities will be OK. Vietnam is close so giving it a try would be smart. Otherwise you are pushing your luck too far.

An Elite or Marriage visas are other options. 

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33 minutes ago, FredGallaher said:

An Elite or Marriage visas are other options. 

I don't see marriage of convenience as a valid option and don't have funds for the Elite. Have been to Vietnam many times and loving it, but I'm sure it will eventually go the same way as Thailand. Won't consider it as a long-term solution.

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39 minutes ago, FredGallaher said:

I'm sure students at accredited universities will be OK

Does anyone by any chance know if there are any such unis in Bangkok or around? Well, anywhere else but CM?

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There is "start your own business" visa, worst case, if not yet 50. It's not cheap, but an alternative to Elite. 

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