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Confirmed: Visa run crackdown effective from August 12, 2014: Thai Foreign Ministry


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I find it difficult to grasp the stupidity and hypocrisy of this. People working illegally! These people do not get tourist visas, rather they slide across the border, after, allegedly, paying the cops, and then head to Bangkok and work in the restaurant behind the scenes, or on fishing boats, or wherever. How many farang work illegally in Thailand? Damm few, and the work they do is not something that competes with Thais.

Has the Thai gov (whoever that is) considered that back to back tourist visa people might in fact be good guys? I mean guys supporting a Thai wife, her children from her first, Thai, marriage, and her family, and 1/2 the village.

I can arrive in Sing, get 3 months free on arrival. Then, 3 months later head over to Malaysia or Indon for a day, return and get another 3 months. No questions, no fuss. Does Sing know something Thailand does not?

This has all the hallmarks of a large bureacracy, managing itself, trying to look as if it is doing something, and targetting foreigners is always an easy mark. Great job.

I doubt you would be able to spend 3 months in Singapore, "turn around" in Malaysia & come back without being quizzed by immigration (you certainly wouldn't be able to do it a 2nd time) you may even find yourself stopped on the Malaysian side if you don't have proof of onward travel.

I've been stopped coming back from JB & questioned by Singapore immigration (even though I live here, have a long term Employment Pass & was on my way through the e-gates which are only available to long term SG residents) & its usual to be asked for proof of onward travel / right to stay in the country when returning nowadays as they've really tightened up on immigration.

Back to Thailand, wouldn't it be easier to get a Marriage Visa? Or there's always the option of the Thai Elite card.

I lived in Singapore 2005 - 2011 on a tourist visa and was never once questioned traveling by air out or traveling by car to JB for some weekly golf.

Kurt

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I don't understand why some many people here are "confused" it's really very simple. If you're legally working or retired in Thailand then it doesn't affect you at all. The only people it affects are the people who are illegally staying in Thailand exploiting the tourist visa and visa exemptions issued to certain countries. If a Thai person applied for a tourist visa for the USA or any EU country and they were granted the visa, they would not be granted a second tourist visa on the completion of their original tourist visa. Most countries in the EU make you wait a minimum of 90 days from the expiry of your previous tourist visa before they let you apply for a new one.

YOU are confused.

The first part of what you describe is the intent of as yet to be defined policies. Intent and actual policy are not the same thing or else there would be no crime, anywhere, ever. Since none of the details have been announced, and you must have secret sources, please tell me;

How many days does a person have to stay outside Thailand before they are no longer a 'border runner' 2? 3? 10? 100? If not some number of days, then how will immigration decide? Are they psychic? Will it be by lottery? Don't tell me 'they know.'

The rest of your post makes no sense at all. US tourist visas are 10 year multiple entry. And yeah; you can just apply for them back to back. Not that it matters at all.

Tell your secret sources that their messenger is an idiot.

Seems you and your psychic friends take things a little personally.

I was never implying I knew what the new policy for Thai immigrations would be I was merely stating the policies of SOME EU countries as a reference.

The point of my post was that the new Thai immigrations regulations only affect people who are misusing their visas as the only thing you should be doing on a tourist visa is being a tourist.

You have absolutely no idea who it will and will not effect. Only the intent of the policy has been announced. The details of its implementation are not known. They are not known by me, by you, or by the person who wrote the OP.

'Should' statements falls into the realm of morality and ethics and are distinct from the details of law or policy.

If intent were enough to guarantee outcomes I would have won the lottery several times by now. Also, Thailand would have a workable visa system where you could actually move between jobs and transfer your work permit (there's a section for it) instead of having to do a border run the day your contract ends.

And oh yeah, sorry for not knowing that in Europe in there also a "USA" Which country is it?

Edited by BudRight
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Why are some people upset about this? Where I come from people can't come and go as they please.

Why don't they just get the paperwork done...no problems. But it's all about bending the rules isn't it ??

Thanks bobobo maybe you can get the paperwork sorted for me seems you know so much, I'm 50 in nine months so will be applying for non o and retirement then , I already have sufficient funds in a Thai acc , so perhaps you could sort the relevant visa for me in the mean time ?

I'm not working here just spending money the last nine months on tourist visas until I reach 50. Hopefully it shouldn't be a problem

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Why are some people upset about this? Where I come from people can't come and go as they please.

Why don't they just get the paperwork done...no problems. But it's all about bending the rules isn't it ??

I get that this is an emotive issue - its the constant rants about how it will impact tourist numbers in Thailand and other random issues that wear me down. All I care about is getting my visa application processed and getting the stamp I need when I come back to Thailand - I dont spend any more time thinking about tourist numbers than I do thinking about the public healthcare system for Thai people. Even though I live in Pattaya and I have no desire to see the locals suffer, I dont particularly care what the crackdown does to tourist numbers. Also not sure when some of us started working for the Thai government but we seem to have an awful lot of experts on the internal workings of various departments, including the Department of Labor. Seems they have a crack team continually monitoring all internet traffic with the express purpose of finding Farang who are in breach of their visa conditions - something like this ......

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enemy_of_the_State_(film)

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does this crackdown affect only land borders?or any border?

i used to fly from Bangkok to Bali and come back after few days.no more?

ubonjoe can give you a more definitive answer, but I am led to believe it will be at all Immigration checkpoints - land, air and sea. If you were flying back in and getting another 30-day stamp, I suspect you wont be permitted to do that any more but ultimately no-one can categorically say that until August 12. There are anecdotal reports in other threads of people being given a hard time recently.

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There are many people over 50 in Thailand with a retirement visa that have very little funds so it annoys me to hear all these experts harping on about how it won't affect them . I am here on a tourist visa , I arrived on a triple entry , went to Laos got a double entry and recently Hanoi with my Thai gf but would only be issued a single entry.

The thing that annoys me is I have a lot better finances than a lot of people on retirement visas but I'm not 50 for another 9 months so it's possible I will have to leave the country in August when my current visa ends.

Why does it bother you that some people followed the rules and won't be impacted? I'm not saying you have to take glee in their misfortune but it's pretty shortsighted to bet your retirement on a loophole in the Thai immigration law. Hell, it's shortsighted to base your retirement on any Thai law. The people who have gone through the process, done things the right way, and are being rewarded, should be somewhat happy that their faith in the rule of law paid off.

And why are you annoyed that you have to wait another 9 months to be eligible for a retirement visa? It's not like that law changed. Oh, or are you just annoyed that Plan A, take advantage of a loophole in Thai immigration law, isn't viable anymore so you have to do it the way you would likely have to do it in most other countries, and wait?

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The fact remains, Thailand has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world, quite factually. I believe it's currently at 1%. That being the case, I have to agree that it makes little sense for a the authority to be concentrating so much on the excuse of farangs working illegally in such a time, when there are so many other things to be concerned with. And even though a lot of members here like to say it won't have any effect, this actually will hurt tourism numbers a great deal. That's only logic - there is no seating capacity which is currently filled, with a waiting list. That's what would be required for it not to damage the economy, so that argument doesn't hold water. The truth is, this will hurt the Thai economy.

Edited by John1thru10
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There are many people over 50 in Thailand with a retirement visa that have very little funds so it annoys me to hear all these experts harping on about how it won't affect them . I am here on a tourist visa , I arrived on a triple entry , went to Laos got a double entry and recently Hanoi with my Thai gf but would only be issued a single entry.

The thing that annoys me is I have a lot better finances than a lot of people on retirement visas but I'm not 50 for another 9 months so it's possible I will have to leave the country in August when my current visa ends.

Why does it bother you that some people followed the rules and won't be impacted? I'm not saying you have to take glee in their misfortune but it's pretty shortsighted to bet your retirement on a loophole in the Thai immigration law. Hell, it's shortsighted to base your retirement on any Thai law. The people who have gone through the process, done things the right way, and are being rewarded, should be somewhat happy that their faith in the rule of law paid off.

And why are you annoyed that you have to wait another 9 months to be eligible for a retirement visa? It's not like that law changed. Oh, or are you just annoyed that Plan A, take advantage of a loophole in Thai immigration law, isn't viable anymore so you have to do it the way you would likely have to do it in most other countries, and wait?

You are in fact, taking joy in someone else's troubles, and going out of your way to rub it in for them. Simply saying you're not doing that at the start, doesn't mean you don't then go on to do exactly that. It's poor behavior, frankly. it shows a low character, in other words. And frankly, I travel a lot, and most countries are quite a bit loser about things in the end. I've overstayed or done back to back entires in the EU many times, and no one cared at all, for example. I could walk back in in a matter of days. There's no fine for staying too long, or any real problem as long as you have a decent reason you can explain an understanding and reasonable border official. So that argument about 'other countries' gets more than thin. Let's be honest, it is just that you enjoy harping, like someone's old nag of a wife, saying 'told you so! told you so!' Let them delete me for it. Go nag at your kids or something.

Edited by John1thru10
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Thai language schools offering Non immigrant ED visa packages for 20k-ish should get a big increase in their business now.

If you're under 50 and not married this is the way to go .

And you can renew this type of visa at least up to 5 years.

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So, no more double-entry tourist visas?

No, you can still apply for a double or triple entry tourist visa, but once it's used up,

you probably wouldn't be issued another one soon after.

That's not what the OP says - it says to be restrictive in back to back visas.

It couldn't be any clearer.

On the contrary. The article says nothing about them not issuing double entry tourist visas anymore. Obviously, if they issue a double entry tourist visa you are allowed to make two successive entries to Thailand. Otherwise, it would be no different from a single entry visa. A double or triple entry visa is ONE visa - you apply for it ONCE and it is issued to you ONCE.

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Yeah, anybody who's on here harping about "following the rules" and all that nonsense is just engaging in misdirection, hoping that with MFA and Immigration focusing on "farangs working illegally" that they won't focus on them.

Fine, Thailand wants to clean house. Go right ahead. There are some miscreants here that are up to no good and they should go. That said, throwing the baby out with the bathwater might put Thailand in a worse situation than they are now. Fact of the matter is, Thailand needs tourist money.

I, too, have seen the impact of this so-called "cleanup" - nobody is around anymore. Even during the busiest of times, the numbers on average are much smaller than they have been previously, especially with the political strife over the past year. I just spoke with my Thai landlord yesterday, checking in on my rented villa. He has had NO BUSINESS AT ALL at his resort since late May.

Maybe the government hopes for a rebound now that the military runs the show. I hope for them that they're right, because if not, they will become irrelevant in a hurry as other nations in SEA welcome foreigners with open arms.

I've no dog in this fight; I come here for 6 months out of the year on a single double-entry tourist visa. I have no plans to do anything other than that . I was going to continue to use this scheme until I turned 50, but if they decide that I'm illegally working here based on that, then bye! There are many other places I can go for my siestas...more than enough without the 24-hour slog it takes to get from the other side of the world.

My advice to those sitting on their high horses in this thread: Don't worry about others, worry about yourselves.

Edited by roxnadz
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This specific letter has been issued to all Diplomatic/Consular Missions and International Organizations within Thailand.

It targets those people who enter on a "Visa Exempt Entry" which is for the purpose of "Tourism Only" but use it as a means to work in Thailand which is illegal.

It is also a veiled warning to those organisations above that if they want to employ foreigners then they must see to it that the employee has the correct visa to enable them to work in Thailand.

It is also a strong warning to anyone who is using any kind of tourist visa to work in Thailand not to do so or else. If you can show that you are a genuine tourist or are coming here for family, medical reasons etc, or purposes other than work then you will not be penalised.

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