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"The Stranded": Highlighting the plight of expats unable to return to Thailand; #2 Retirees


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If you are writing these stories to get my sympathy, it is not working.  I have a some sympathy for anyone who left in 2019, but it ends there. If you left this year, could you not have foreseen how t

A slight nuance to the earlier post #1 teachers.  Whilst I see that TVF and Rooster are doing so in good faith and with compassion, to try and make those of us who might be living under a large rock,(

Since your crystal ball gazing is so great I assume you win the lottery every time! FYI the US for example did not impose travel restrictions on non US citizens until 31 Jan 2020.  How could y

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On 10/17/2020 at 4:09 PM, riverhigh said:

Definition of an immigrant "is a person who comes to live permanently in a foreign country".   To legally become an immigrant in the eyes of the Thai governemnt you need  a permanent residendcy commonly known in farang circles as a PR. Very difficut to get and near impossible if you are an average retiree (I put myslef in that category). None of the people mentioned in this article are "permanent residents" but unfortunately want to be treated as such. While the people mentioend in this article have my sysmpathy, it does not appear they put in the effort to become permanent residents. If you want to adopt Thailand as your country, you have to get Thailand to adopt you. This takes  a lot of effort.  When I came here 16 years ago the PR was ridiculed as being too expensive and not woth the effort. That may be the case but I take off my hat to those who learnt the Thai language to pass the test, start a business/get a job, go through rigorous procedures, inspections, documentation, etc to become a permanent resident. IMHO living in Thailand is a privililedge that has to be earned and not a right. Similar to orignator of this post I do not consider myself as an immnigrant as I did not put in the necessary effort. 

 

P.S. I do not expect any response to my post as this goes against the "entitled" foreigner's perception of how things should work. Readers will quickly dismiss the comment and move on to a comment that fits into their world of thinking.

Found it interesting and wise! 

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3 hours ago, metisdead said:

Another post using excessive ALL CAPS has been removed.  If you do not want to have your posts removed, please stop using the ALL CAPS when posting. 

ok

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(Permanent residency) is "very difficult to get and near impossible if you are an average retiree...."

I don't know what you mean by this, except perhaps that old people can't learn anything new and have no drive to get the necessary papers in order. Also, you don't need to start a business or have a work permit if you are investing here to get that status. 

But this is an issue off the point of the thread. 

 

As I outlined above, there are individuals who are permitted to leave and return to Thailand that have less connection here than nearly all retirees. An "officially sanctioned" student, for example, who had been in Thailand a few months before the border lockdown is now permitted to come and go, while a retiree having lived here for 15 years is prohibited from re-entering under any circumstances. Period. 

 

The virus doesn't know anything about who you are or what job you have or if you are sanctioned student or if you are a diplomat (or a retiree). These prohibitive restrictions have nothing whatsoever to do with disease prevention or the attempt to control the spread of a virus. It is, in essence, a reveal. A defining moment of clarity that illustrates just how welcoming Thai authorities are to the foreigners who have designated Thailand as their new, permanent home. As I mentioned in my above post, retirees are looked upon as contributing nothing of real value to the nation; and therefore, they are, in spite of their longevity here, worthless. 

 

And this is a point I feel is lost on those in power: what do you think "retirement" means? Retirement does not mean that the retiree has another home in his native (or other) land; it means he has decided to come to this country to live for the rest of his life (if things go to plan). This is not a holiday for retirees or a "second home away from home." This is it

 

I have yet to hear or read anything from the government as to why retirees are not allowed back into the country. Someone made this policy. All policies come, initially, from one person. Perhaps that person is not a high-ranking official, but all new ideas come from some particular person. So to the people who know what the concept was/is, please announce to everyone what was (and is) the thinking behind this decision. If it's medical I am all ears to know how this is so. 

 

By the way, and not to be factious, but what about the 3,800 baht I paid for a multiple reentry permit? Is there fine print somewhere that says in the event of a global pandemic, all permits are subject to being voided without compensation? I assume this applies to visas as well, right? 

"Sorry, we've decided to rescind your retirement visa but we are keeping your application and reentry permit fees and also retaining your 800,000 baht collateral money. Thank you very much for your interesting in our country. Now please leave." 

 

 

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On 10/17/2020 at 1:51 PM, crazykopite said:

And it’s my understanding that those who own there homes now must have 3 million baht in a Thai bank this was announced last week as soon as I heard this I started withdrawing my savings Thailand is on a cliff edge and I am not going to risk losing my money if and when they put locks on the cash machines and limit what you can withdraw don’t say it can’t happen it happened in the U.K. a few years back never say never .

"those who own there homes now must have 3 million baht in a Thai bank this was announced last week" 

 

I haven't heard anything about this. Could somebody please elaborate on this?  

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None of them are Thai citizens and none of them has permanent residency so why do they think exceptions should be made for them to come to Thailand.

 

I do understand why they might prefer to live in Thailand against living where they come from but that unfortunately is not a criteria that will get them in. 

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1 minute ago, Peterhua said:

None of them are Thai citizens and none of them has permanent residency so why do they think exceptions should be made for them to come to Thailand.

 

I do understand why they might prefer to live in Thailand against living where they come from but that unfortunately is not a criteria that will get them in. 

 

fair enough, however i'm not sure there are demands for 'exceptions' just application of common sense. many retirees have invested in the country either with capital investment such as houses, condos or have invested financially due to immigration requirements and many have made emotional investment by marrying or dating  a thai citizen.

 

once they are in the country, virus free and quarantined where is the risk over and above the risk to any other human being in the country. plus there is the additional benefit that tourists are continually coming and going and therefore pose continuous risks. i think there is a logical and fair argument to allow retirees into thailand.

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I am a 77 year old expat who has lived in Thailand for almost 20 years.  I now have a Retirement Visa with a return stamp.  My Visa expires in February. I WANT TO GO HOME TO THAILAND.  I had to go to the USA to take care of my deceased husbands estate in March. I have not been able to go back to my home.  I have tried talking to the different Thai Embassies and they either really do not know what is going on or will not say.  I have run into a brick wall since April trying to get home.  I have Thai people who depend on me, I have a complete household there.  What can the Thai government do for us expats.  We put a lot of money onto Thailand on a daily basis not like a rich man's 3 week vacation and leave.  Please help us.

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9 hours ago, jbinthai said:

I am a 77 year old expat who has lived in Thailand for almost 20 years.  I now have a Retirement Visa with a return stamp.  My Visa expires in February. I WANT TO GO HOME TO THAILAND. 

...

Sorry to hear about your predicament.

But indeed, when your still valid permission to stay (protected by a Re-Entry Permit) is based on an original Non Imm O Visa for reason of RETIREMENT, you do not fall under the categories that are currently allowed to return to Thailand.

You can only return on such a valid Non Imm O Visa based permission to stay, when being married to a Thai national or having thai dependent children.

What you CAN do is apply for a Non Imm O-A Visa as holders of such Visa are eligible for the CoE that is required to return to Thailand.

However to apply for that Visa you will need health-insurance that meets the 400K/40K in/out-patient coverage requirement.  And being 77 years old, there is NO Thai TGIA-associated insurer (the only ones accepted by Immigration) that will provide you with a policy.  So you would need to make use of the Foreign Insurance Certificate signed by your foreign/international insurer stating that your policy meets those requirements.

Note: On top of that you will also need covid-19 insurance coverage (but that should be no problem as the Thai policies have no age restriction to subscribe to such insurance, and it is of course possible that your foreign/international policy already covers covid-19).

>> I did PM you a Guideline document on how to meet the health-insurance requirement when applying for such Non Imm O-A Visa.

To access your PM-messages just click the letter-icon next to your profile when logged-in to the Forum.

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Thai authorities should have allowed O-A visa entry at the same time it allowed work visas and O married visas.  On the other hand most other countries have also blocked inbound travel except for citizens.  Luckily now it looks like O-A visas are allowed in.

 

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On 10/17/2020 at 3:28 PM, Peter Denis said:

What you write is not correct > it is ONLY when applying for a Special Tourist Visa (STV) that you need to travel from a “LOW-RISK” AREA.

When meeting the criteria (e.g. married to a Thai national, or with a Non Imm O-A Visa) you can apply for the COE at your Thai Embassy/Consulate abroad.

 

That's what i thought originally. With all the flip flopping they have done i got confused, i hope you are right

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