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Thai Immigration launches 'new' crackdown on visa runners

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What amazes me is that there actually foreigners living in Thailand on visa exempts only.

Who in their right mind could be bothered having to go to a border every 30 days to stamp in and out. That is no life.

Does anyone know anybody who actually does this?

I don't get why anyone would.

A trip to your local immigration office every 90 days VS a visa run every month???

seems like a no brainer to me

ever wondered why so many expats live near the border?

There is absolutely no point allowing foreigners into your country unless they serve some useful purpose. Namely, they work to contribute to the economy, possibly doing jobs that locals can't or won't do or they pay money via taxation or some form of indirect taxation. Visas are an indirect form of taxation. I exclude tourists from this definition because they stay in hotels and use other services and buy goods, all of which contribute to the economy, but they are short stay. Many countries charge these foreign tourists for their visas which in turn contributes to the economy. Isn't this a basic fact of business life? There is no entitlement simply a call to foreigners to contribute to the country they chose to live in or visit. Isn't that fair enough!

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What amazes me is that there actually foreigners living in Thailand on visa exempts only.

Who in their right mind could be bothered having to go to a border every 30 days to stamp in and out. That is no life.

Does anyone know anybody who actually does this?

I don't get why anyone would.

A trip to your local immigration office every 90 days VS a visa run every month???

seems like a no brainer to me

Let me guess: you are over 50?

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What's the visa "crackdown" count up to now? 10,000 maybe. A crackdown a day keeps the farang away.

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The only way to end this madness is for immediate reciprocation from western nations to make the sons and daughters of the Thai elite start visa running - with clear doubts over their re-entry being cast. Once these little darlings have been forced to leave their luxury dwellings to flit off to Calais or other migrant infested hellholes with no real idea when or if they will be allowed to return, there will be an awakening.

And then perhaps Thailand will require all tourists from say the UK, to have visas, as the UK requires of them.

That would be reciprocation too.

It would, but it wouldn't be smart at all.

People from western countries come to Thailand by hundreds of thousands as tourists and spend money here.

People from Thailand go to western countries to work (if they can), a few go to study, and a few others actually go to travel.

I would guess that most people who stay here using serial visa exempt entries are those who don't have the financial wherewithal to be able to meet the requirements for a long-stay visa and extension. Those who may fly in from Europe or America or other parts of Asia for a short visit and have money to spend will still get a visa exempt entry or tourist visa, travel around the country, spend money and then leave. Those who have the financial resources and meet other requirements for longer stays will have no problem and Thailand will benefit from their presence.

Anyone who doesn't meet the requirements for the usual extensions of stay but has money to burn can go the Thai Elite route.

One can sympathize with those who are struggling financially and can only remain in Thailand by doing visa exempt border runs (and we can envision that anyone of us could find ourselves in a similar situation) just as we can sympathize with all the migrants fleeing to Europe, Australia or the US.

But claiming that Thailand is economically dependent on those who stay here using serial visa exempt entries because they don't have the finances to get long-stay extensions is a specious argument. Thailand, like western countries, has to look after its own self interests by restricting who enters and remains here.

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The only way to end this madness is for immediate reciprocation from western nations to make the sons and daughters of the Thai elite start visa running - with clear doubts over their re-entry being cast. Once these little darlings have been forced to leave their luxury dwellings to flit off to Calais or other migrant infested hellholes with no real idea when or if they will be allowed to return, there will be an awakening.

How does that make any kind of sense?

1.It's not the case that children of wealthy Thais stay overseas without proper documentation and visas.Why should Thai young people be penalised for the mistakes and omissions of usually middle aged foreigners?

2.The Thai Immigration system is a liberal one, far more so than most Western countries.

3.The visa run system is and always was a breach of the spirit of Thai immigration rules.

4.The fact that non qualified foreigners can remain "resident" through visa running is symptomatic of the Thai system's flexibility and generosity.

5.It was always a risk that the authorities would clamp down on visa runners in the event of a major security crisis.

6.I hope that there will be a relaxation but it cannot be guaranteed nor can it be guaranteed that after any relaxation there will not be another clamp down in the future.

7.It is a relatively simple matter for qualified foreigners to obtain proper documentation.The cost is not excessive.

8.The reality is that many thousands fail to understand Thailand is not a suitable retirement destination for those who aren't reasonably well off.

9.The tolerance of the Thai authorities - even now - as regards visa running should be seen as a privilege not as a right.

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Sa Kaeo immigration checkpoint seems to be a major target for corruption but all the Major City's / Immigration Checkpoints are just as bad ..?

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With tourism tanking, if they had any sense you'd think they would welcome the additional spending. Guess those folks can just keep going and settle in more farang friendly place

I guess like most places that experience something like "9/11", things happen and national priorities have to change., at least for a while until they get a better handle on the situation.

Even in Thailand perhaps sometimes some things are more important than money and being farang friendly.

Haven't they decided that the bomb was done by some indistinguishable quasi-looking farangs if not, and directed at a different source of tourist income than narcissists..

What precisely would anyone suggest doing in response to try and prevent a recurrence, besides shooting all the usual suspects on sight and asking questions later.

Christ, for my next trip back to Canada I've had to determine if I still need more paperwork than my passport just to change planes in the land of amazing grace, or be s.o.l.

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There are a lot of people in the education sector who do visa runs. Some because they simply are not eligible to work legally and some because of complications and time factors which means they may have to make a visa run before their paperwork is ready for the non-B visa.

For non-native speakers, they have to take a TOEIC test and if it is full they have to wait 1 or 2 weeks. The paperwork has to be submitted to the Thai Teacher's Council and the local MOE (depending on where you are) and a letter is issued by them to the embassy/consulate where you plan to get the non-B. This takes time and any delay means a visa run. For some nationalities, like Filipinos, they only get 15 days.

We recently had a fully qualified teacher (degree in education/experience) who was getting ready to get the non-B visa. He lost his passport and the whole process had to start all over.

Anything dealing with people and the human condition is subject to problems and the need for exceptions.

One missing form or one missing signature or a stamp in the wrong color can delay things.

I recommend that you have a tourist visa while you are in the process of obtaining all documents for your non-b application. For me it took 4 months before I had all documents needed because as usual the embassy/immigration asked for something new that they didn't ask for last year! New for this year was that I had to get letters signed by the Secretary General of OVEC and OHEC as my work falls under both jurisdictions sins last year and there are NO local MOE offices at that level. If you work in primary or secondary school then you have a local office in the province or even the district (primary) so then it's EASY to get the documents.

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I wish to disclose my ignorance.

If you are not a tourist, for what reasons would one need to do visa runs?

There are numerous visas available for long stay. If you do not qualify, you are not welcome!

Enlightenment sought.

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I really don't see the problem. Why can't most of you simply get a flight in? They won't question you then. AirAsia flies extremely cheap. Or go to Hong Kong, or Bali, or Vientaine, or Savannakhet, get a double entry tourist visa and not worry about it for half a year? Is it really worth going every 15 days?

IMHO, if you are so broke that you don't even have the money for the occasional flight, you should go back to your own country and earn a little more cash first or apply for a job as a teacher here to supplement your income.

It's their country, if they don't want you doing back to back visa exemption runs, that's their prerogative. You can't do that in the EU and you can't do that in the USA and you can't do that in Canada, so why should they allow it here?

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I don't get why anyone would.

A trip to your local immigration office every 90 days VS a visa run every month???

seems like a no brainer to me

Unless, of course, you're one of the many who don't qualify for a legitimate visa and/or other permission to stay in the country long term (like extension of stay). Those guys have no such option, and either have to do visa runs, risk arrest, or leave the country.

So you're saying they're "illegal aliens", migrants or maybe just Mexicans in love with a Thai senorita?

555

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This is nonsense. I got my 30-day "exemption" visa extended by 30 days just yesterday. Sorry, TV, but you're not where I look for investigative journalism.

To get an extension of 30-day exemption, that is done in country at immigration. Leaving the country and re-entering using visa exemption is not extending it but using a new one. Also, this has been primarily at Cambodia border land crossings as has been shown in many reports from TV members and immigration statements. AFAIK this is only land border crossings, not air arrivals, at least what reports have indicated.

We're saying the same thing. Extensions are not affected. Not yet... An unnamed immigration officer reporting to Thai Visa is not a good source.

To be fair, I see the same is being reported in the English language newspaper we aren't allowed to mention on here.

I guess Thai Visa are doing their best to tell us what they can.

It comes back to a post I made in another thread - it should be Immigration officially informing us of news like this and not left up to internet forums to try and piece together the mess of Immigration officials!!

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"IMHO, if you are so broke that you don't even have the money for the occasional flight, you should go back to your own country and earn a little more cash first or apply for a job as a teacher here to supplement your income."

Thailand has English teaching jobs in bars????

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