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Capantha

30 Days Or Overstay?

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A couple of weeks ago I went to Aranyaprathet for my VE stamp. After reading the threads on here I checked my previous VE stamps carefully and worked out. I would only get six days. I would have got a TV but was lacking on the funds at that time and I didn'tfancy overstaying. Anyhoo on exit the nice lady at IM checked my passport thoroughly (as I expected) and politely informed me I would only get six days on re-entry. I smiled and said that's fine. She then wrote a small note in Thai with the number six in it over my exit stamp. I assumed this was a note for the IMO at the entry side stating I only had six days and thus saving him the job of going through my stamps. However on re-entry the two guys infront of me, who had nonB's, had quite a bit of trouble with the IMO ( I don't know why ) . Seeing this and how miffed the IMO was getting I thought "sh1t" and expected trouble with my VE stamp. When my turn came I just smiled at the IMO and he smiled back ( good sign I thought) and started checking my PP not very thoroughly at first but then the calculator came out. He taped away on his calc as he flicked through the pages then he got his stamp and bump, done and dusted. I thanked him took my PP and walked through (feeling quite relieved I might add). No mess, no fuss. When I got outside I checked my stamp. 30 days! Nice one! I thought, top result! Then alarmbells started ringring. He has obviously fcuked up I thought. So being the conscientious person, that I am (yeah right!), I decided to ask the guide. She said he had made a mistake and she would go and correct for me. I told her I didn't mind having 30 days (who would). She then told me that if she didn't change it the next time I go to the border I would get charged for overstaying by 24 days as my previous VE stamps showed I was only entitled to six days not 30. Not relishing the idea of paying 12K ioverstay or spending time in Immigrations quaint concrete guest house I said OK. So she took my PP back the IMO that had given me the stamp, who said "Oops" and changed it promptly to six days and thanked her for pointing out the mistake (credit where credits due). The end.

My question is if I had have taken the original 30 days stamp could/would they charge me for overstaying if they checked my previous stamps or is it case of the IMO made the mistake so it isn't my fault- take your 30 days son.

If it is the case of an overstaying fine I thought it would be good idea to share the info with other visa runners so they don't get caught with their pants down.

If it is a case of take your 30 days son I'll keep my gob shut next time!

Any input would be appreciated guys.

Thanks

Cap

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YOU DID RIGHT :o:D

It is YOUR responsibility to check the stamp in your PP is correct and yes, you would almost certainly have got stung for the overstay.

Example. One one of my few border runs (I'm in and out a lot on a non-o) one lady had previously got 33 days on her visa exempt entry (in error). She arrived on the last day of the stamp, it was noticed and she got stung for 3 days overstay, no amount of pleading would sway the officer (rightly so of course).

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With all due respect, Crossy, your example isn't precisely one that applies to the OP's situation. The lady in question was given more than the normal maximum value of the visa exempt stamp (for most nationalities anyway). The OP was simply presented with the dilemma of the normal maximum or a reduced number of days under one possible counting scheme.

Given the fact that different points of entry are still interpreting the 180-day VE regulations in different ways, one can imagine a situation where one border post uses a looser interpretation and gives a longer admittance period, then a more strict exit point declares an overstay.

The situation with Immigration is frankly a bit ridiculous at least on this one narrow issue. They push too much of the responsibility back onto the individual traveler. If they make a mistake on the dates, they should own up to it and not punish someone who probably only has a vague familiarity with the fine points of the immigration regulations but still seeks to comply with the stamp they are given.

Much of the blame can be laid on the antiquated computer systems they are using, or in many cases failing to use.

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With all due respect, Crossy, your example isn't precisely one that applies to the OP's situation. The lady in question was given more than the normal maximum value of the visa exempt stamp (for most nationalities anyway). The OP was simply presented with the dilemma of the normal maximum or a reduced number of days under one possible counting scheme.

Agreed, but it's the closest example that I have personal experience of, I was really using it to illustrate that the onus is on YOU to check the stamp :o

In our OP's case he and the outgoing immigration officer had come to the same conclusion, 6 days. The incoming chap really seems to have had little clue and appears to have just bashed in 30 days to get rid of the farang. I still believe that he did the right thing, certainly the safest thing :D

In hindsight it may have been better to go to immigration in BKK and ask if the stamp was valid (before the 6 days was up).

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I would have gone with the 30..

This is after all officer discretion they constantly bandy about..

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Here you can read what happened to me some time ago. You never know, things can turn out different at different locations. My case is not the same case though but you can draw your own conclusions.

In your case you might have gotten away with it. If you went for 30 day though I would have checked in at some immigration and asked for an extension a day or two before it ran out.

3 months tourist visa on arrival

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