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My wife and I are trying to decide between the Retirement Visa and the Elite Visa... (we are both obviously in our 50's).   I know what the Elite costs...but can anyone be so kind as to give me an idea of approx costs to aquire the retirement visa for both of us?  And do we have to make border runs every year and do we have to re-apply every year?  

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Which country will you be obtaining the Visa(s) in? There are 3 types of 'Retirement' Visa that might be associated with what you are asking of . A simple Non-Imm-O based on being retired can be obtained in some countries, but only permits a single 90 day entry. There are also long stay Visas designed for over 50s, the Non-Imm-OA and OX. 

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21 minutes ago, sdweller said:

We are US Citizens... both over 50 years old...looking for the long-stay visa I believe Non-Imm OA

I expect you have read this then already. That shows each visa will cost $200 USD per application.

Extra costs incurred will be obtaining a medical certificate, criminal record check, 12 months of medical insurance. 

One must show a bank balance in the USA (or Thailand) of approximately $27,000 or income of $2,200 pcm, or combination. (800.000 baht and 65,000 baht respectively)

There are further requirements during Covid not included here.

 

The O-A is a multiple entry Visa valid for 12 months, and each entry would be for 12 months stay or the validity of the medical insurance. It would be desirable to do a 'border run' just before the end of the Visa life (one year from issue) to effectively get another year out of it. After 2 years you have the choice of either returning to the USA, for another Visa, or applying within Thailand for a retirement extension to continue to live here. 

 

 

Edited by jacko45k
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 To answer your Q. directly -A retirement visa costs 1900 Baht per applicant. That is  the easy bit.

To qualify for such a visa -which is technically a visa extension you have to start with a Non immigrant 'O' visa . Typically this can be obtained in your own country.

However I understand that you can arrive in Thailand on the 30 day Visa on Arrival-and obtain a Non immigrant 'O' visa if you intend to convert to a retirement visa. Your local immigration office will give you more advice on this.

 You also have financial obligations.

800K Baht in a bank for 2 months prior to application date and the same 800K  90 days after.

Alternative if you can show 65000 Baht coming into a Thai bank for each of 12 months prior -then that is also acceptable.

The foregoing -in your case -has to be repeated . There are no concessions for a married couple.

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2 minutes ago, Delight said:

 To answer your Q. directly -A retirement visa costs 1900 Baht per applicant. That is  the easy bit.

To qualify for such a visa -which is technically a visa extension you have to start with a Non immigrant 'O' visa . Typically this can be obtained in your own country.

However I understand that you can arrive in Thailand on the 30 day Visa on Arrival-and obtain a Non immigrant 'O' visa if you intend to convert to a retirement visa. Your local immigration office will give you more advice on this.

 You also have financial obligations.

800K Baht in a bank for 2 months prior to application date and the same 800K  90 days after.

Alternative if you can show 65000 Baht coming into a Thai bank for each of 12 months prior -then that is also acceptable.

The foregoing -in your case -has to be repeated . There are no concessions for a married couple.

As he is coming from the US he cannot get a non-O for retirement, will have to get O-A. Same same except for mandatory health insurance - which is more problematic than it sounds as only Thai issued policies (overprices and poor value) are allowed for in-country extensions, though can use a foreign policy for the initial visa if the insurer will sign the requisite certificate.

 

I think he could get just OA for himself and his wife piggy back onto that with a dependent visa? (Maybe not at this time, but post-COVID restrictions)?

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8 hours ago, sdweller said:

We are US Citizens... both over 50 years old...looking for the long-stay visa I believe Non-Imm OA

get the Non O
cost apx $60 for the 1st 90 days.

than a 1 year extension is 1,900 IF you have the 800,000 in the bank,

NOTE: if ur legally married you can get the extension on ur 800,000 or 65,000 transferred monthly and ur wife can have her extension tagged to urs, ( dependent extension)  so no need for her to have the 800,000 in the bank

 

DO NOT get the Non OA as than ur always going to need insurance..

 

IF you cant get the non O in the states , ( its easier to than get a regular tourist visa ( for now) an than update to a non o ( for now easily done) 

If you wait a few months or so after covid

you could alternatively  easily travel to Penang or Laos to get the non o

Edited by zzzzz
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Apply for a tourist visa at your local embassy, costs about 1000THB

Fly to Thailand, deposit 800k in a Thai bank account, apply for a non-o visa for retirement, costs 2000THB

After 90 days apply for a one year extension for retirement, costs 1900THB (yearly)

 

I would clearly choose the retirement visa route for 4900THB for the first year and then 1900THB in the following years over spending 50,000 to 100,000THB per year for the Elite visa.

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6 minutes ago, sdweller said:

Thanks to everyjone for this info.....to be clear, I need to show 800,000 thai baht balance in a Thai bank, or my bank here in the USA?  

To apply for a non-o visa at immigration you need 800k baht in a Thai bank on the day you apply and then 800k baht in for 2 months for the one year extension of stay application.

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10 hours ago, Sheryl said:

As he is coming from the US he cannot get a non-O for retirement, will have to get O-A. Same same except for mandatory health insurance - which is more problematic than it sounds as only Thai issued policies (overprices and poor value) are allowed for in-country extensions, though can use a foreign policy for the initial visa if the insurer will sign the requisite certificate.

 

I think he could get just OA for himself and his wife piggy back onto that with a dependent visa? (Maybe not at this time, but post-COVID restrictions)?

well said, Sheryl.

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Its all right now not easily  available because of virus. And depending on your financial situation you maybe should wait till all restrictions will be gone. Even opening bank account  in Thailand might be problem. On a top of it you sounds like never spend any time in Thailand.

Rent before you buy.

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Last year, I converted from an Annual Retirement Visa to the 20 Year Elite. 

 

No perfect answer.

I was caught in crosshairs of the Coronavirus, not wanting to travel 10 hours to get certain documents. 

Had also moved from Jomtien to Isaarn - So the trip to Immigration went from an easy 20 minute walk to a 2+ hour drive. 

Also -- The insurance requirement for retirement visas only gets more and more expensive (and restrictive) as you get older.  Do the long term math, and the Elite Visa is cheaper. 

 

If you live in Bangkok, there are some other (limited) benefits to the Elite Visa. 

And there's the simple convenience of only renewing every 5 years. 

 

Traded the 800k baht Retirement guarantee sitting in the bank for a 1M baht payment.

Not that I expect to live 20 years - But as I told my wife - If I croak much sooner than the 20 years on the Elite Visa, the loss of a few 100k baht will probably be the least of my problems. 

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