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ubonjoe

Border Run Alternatives

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Hello. I am not sure if this is the right thread to ask, but I have a USA passport, stayed a continuous total of 6 months between 2017-2018 on an SETV and two border runs for VE, got a new passport as my old one was filled up, left Thailand for about 13 months, came back in June this year on an SETV and extended it, left for a few weeks to another country, and returned to Suvarnabhumi trying to get a VE entry.
The immigration officer was not happy to let me in because he said I stayed too long (I guess one SETV in a year is now bad?), but he did so after I showed proof of onward travel. He told me to get a tourist visa next time I want to come in. I planned to stay here until December but him telling me that made me decide to just leave here for good before my current extended VE entry is up. I bought air tickets to leave and already sent money to rent an apartment in my next destination. My date for flying out is coming up in a few days, but a couple days ago I picked up some truly amazing food poisoning that's got me feeling like I am on floating in and out of reality with fevers and loss of strength. I have no power to get on that red eye flight, and I am considering changing my ticket and doing a border run and giving myself a week or so to recover and pack up before I fly.

 

I haven't used any land-border crossings this year and I know the borders tend to be a lot more relaxed than the awful Bangkok airports. If I can prove I have 20k baht in my wallet, an onward ticket, and a rental contract and Western Union payment to the landlord (to help prove my onward travel), do you think a land-border would give me a second VE entry for the year?

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24 minutes ago, verysimple said:

Hello. I am not sure if this is the right thread to ask, but I have a USA passport, stayed a continuous total of 6 months between 2017-2018 on an SETV and two border runs for VE, got a new passport as my old one was filled up, left Thailand for about 13 months, came back in June this year on an SETV and extended it, left for a few weeks to another country, and returned to Suvarnabhumi trying to get a VE entry.
The immigration officer was not happy to let me in because he said I stayed too long (I guess one SETV in a year is now bad?), but he did so after I showed proof of onward travel. He told me to get a tourist visa next time I want to come in. I planned to stay here until December but him telling me that made me decide to just leave here for good before my current extended VE entry is up. I bought air tickets to leave and already sent money to rent an apartment in my next destination. My date for flying out is coming up in a few days, but a couple days ago I picked up some truly amazing food poisoning that's got me feeling like I am on floating in and out of reality with fevers and loss of strength. I have no power to get on that red eye flight, and I am considering changing my ticket and doing a border run and giving myself a week or so to recover and pack up before I fly.

 

I haven't used any land-border crossings this year and I know the borders tend to be a lot more relaxed than the awful Bangkok airports. If I can prove I have 20k baht in my wallet, an onward ticket, and a rental contract and Western Union payment to the landlord (to help prove my onward travel), do you think a land-border would give me a second VE entry for the year?

A border bounce at a land crossing will be fine (as long as you avoid Aran/Poipet). However, if you just need a few days (and depending on your local immigration office) a denied request for an extension of stay and seven days to leave the country might be less stressful than the border run.

 

By the way, which airport were you using for entry when the immigration official suggested that a tourist visa would be OK where a visa exempt entry was not? There is evidence that Chiang Mai airport still has that policy, but that the Bangkok airports now see the possession of a visa as irrelevant.

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On 11/13/2019 at 12:36 PM, BritTim said:

By the way, which airport were you using for entry when the immigration official suggested that a tourist visa would be OK where a visa exempt entry was not? There is evidence that Chiang Mai airport still has that policy, but that the Bangkok airports now see the possession of a visa as irrelevant.

Thank you for the response. I arrived into Suvarnabhumi/BKK after about 2 weeks in another country that doesn't share a border with Thailand. I had stayed less than 90 days in Thailand on an extended SETV before leaving Thailand to visit another country, then returning to BKK with my (foreign) friend. I thought it bizarre that my return to Thailand was treated like I was doing something illegal, especially after having been out of Thailand for over a year prior to my 2019 visit, and only staying a total of less than 180 days between two calendar years as my prior history in Thailand. I guess no arrival into BKK/DMK in the future is safe for me, since after I leave here my current time in Thailand will be added to the list of grievous offenses I have made to the Kingdom. 

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US citizen arrives on a visa exempt.  Needs 96 days but can live with 90.  Can this be done?

Extend the visa exempt for 30 days for a total of ~60 days

Do a border run to add 30 days for a total of ~90 days

Do another border run to add another 30 days or try another extension, get denied and get 7 days.

 

Do extensions and border runs start on the day they applied for or at the end of the previous one?

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22 hours ago, verysimple said:

Thank you for the response. I arrived into Suvarnabhumi/BKK after about 2 weeks in another country that doesn't share a border with Thailand. I had stayed less than 90 days in Thailand on an extended SETV before leaving Thailand to visit another country, then returning to BKK with my (foreign) friend. I thought it bizarre that my return to Thailand was treated like I was doing something illegal, especially after having been out of Thailand for over a year prior to my 2019 visit, and only staying a total of less than 180 days between two calendar years as my prior history in Thailand. I guess no arrival into BKK/DMK in the future is safe for me, since after I leave here my current time in Thailand will be added to the list of grievous offenses I have made to the Kingdom. 

 

 

The crackdown at Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueng are more strict than ever. Even myself, I have been denied entry at BKK.  But I still live in Thailand on Tourist visas. Nothing to hide. The border immigration let me in with a smile. No questions asked even though they see my full history on their screens.

 

The way I do it is by knowing all my options.  I take advantage of doing my 2 land border runs per year and extending that. Which gives me 4 months. Plus doing a Tourist Visa run via land border and extendin g that for an additional 3 months. You can go to Yangon. Vientiane. Savannakhet, Kuala Lumpur from Bangkok via bus. I don't ever need to fly out of Thailand anymore until they start changing procedures at land borders and it becomes a problem. 

 

I recently got a "too many visas" warning in my passport but I bought a brand new passport, to do fresh new visa runs at the border consulates again. This is really the only option if you plan to live in Thailand on tourist visas until you decide you are finished with Thailand. Take advantage of the 2 border runs per year, and tourist visa from neighboring country, and buying a new passport after they stamp a remark/warning stamp in it. 

 

Other than that, if you plan on flying out of Thailand. Don't fly back in. Fly to neighboring country and use the bus to come back in, then you can continue on via domestic flight or bus to Bangkok.

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17 minutes ago, AAArdvark said:

Do extensions and border runs start on the day they applied for or at the end of the previous one?

Extensions start from the end of the 30 day entry.

A new 30 day entry would start from the day you enter the country.

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30 minutes ago, ubonjoe said:

Extensions start from the end of the 30 day entry.

A new 30 day entry would start from the day you enter the country.

Thank you.

But is it alright to do an extension within Thailand and then do a border run for an additional 30 days.  I am just not familiar with the limitations for visa exempt.

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11 minutes ago, AAArdvark said:

Thank you.

But is it alright to do an extension within Thailand and then do a border run for an additional 30 days.  I am just not familiar with the limitations for visa exempt.

There is no limit on visa exempt entries by air. At land border crossings only 2 are allowed per calendar year.

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4 hours ago, AAArdvark said:

US citizen arrives on a visa exempt.  Needs 96 days but can live with 90.  Can this be done?

Extend the visa exempt for 30 days for a total of ~60 days

Do a border run to add 30 days for a total of ~90 days

Do another border run to add another 30 days or try another extension, get denied and get 7 days.

 

Do extensions and border runs start on the day they applied for or at the end of the previous one?

You should be fine. Note that the second visa exempt entry (by land) can also be extended by 30 days so a second border bounce is not necessary.

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21 hours ago, BritTim said:

You should be fine. Note that the second visa exempt entry (by land) can also be extended by 30 days so a second border bounce is not necessary.

Thank you.  I am in a unique situation (of my own making).  I am still in the first year of a pre-31 October O-A visa.  I will be reentering at DMK on the 26th.  What is unique is that I actually want them to say I have to have insurance and give me a 30 day stamp.  It is the easiest way to leave the GF, gives me time to finish my condo lease and move on.

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51 minutes ago, AAArdvark said:

Thank you.  I am in a unique situation (of my own making).  I am still in the first year of a pre-31 October O-A visa.  I will be reentering at DMK on the 26th.  What is unique is that I actually want them to say I have to have insurance and give me a 30 day stamp.  It is the easiest way to leave the GF, gives me time to finish my condo lease and move on.

As you say, a unique situation. I would have thought you could find another reason why you need to leave than visa problems, especially as your girlfriend might come up with suggested solutions to those. However, I obviously do not know as much about your situation as you do.

 

Please take a few minutes to let us know whether insurance was an issue reentering with the Non O-A.

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1 hour ago, BritTim said:

As you say, a unique situation. I would have thought you could find another reason why you need to leave than visa problems, especially as your girlfriend might come up with suggested solutions to those. However, I obviously do not know as much about your situation as you do.

 

Please take a few minutes to let us know whether insurance was an issue reentering with the Non O-A.

Will do.

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Hello,

 

I am trying decide if I need to get a tourist visa or attempt another visa on arrival, as I am now not sure if I'd manage to get either. Since December 16th 2018 my total days spent in Thailand are 143 days, I have done no boarder runs as I have just extended the visa on arrival twice. My passport shows, in between each visit I have been out of Thailand between 1-3 months every time. 

 

My plan would be to come to Thailand at Christmas for a month, I am currently in Borneo (Malaysian side). My English friend was denied a tourist visa from the Thai Embassy in London, as he was told you can only spend 6 months of a year in Thailand. According to them he was over that by 28 days, also he has been doing very obvious border runs.

 

I would love some advice on whether you think I could get back into the country with a visa on arrival, or would I better off trying to get a tourist visa? With the tourist visa application, it says you need a round plane ticket saying when you're entering and leaving the country. The problem with that in my eyes, is that I don't want to spend money on plane tickets when I don't even know if I can get into the country. 

 

Is there any way around this, or do you have to have the plane tickets booked before applying for the tourist visa?

 

Here is a link to the tourist visa form: http://www.thaiembassy.org/kualalumpur/contents/images/text_editor/files/1_1.pdf

 

Thanks 

 

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10 hours ago, Danny Morris said:

My plan would be to come to Thailand at Christmas for a month, I am currently in Borneo (Malaysian side). My English friend was denied a tourist visa from the Thai Embassy in London, as he was told you can only spend 6 months of a year in Thailand. According to them he was over that by 28 days, also he has been doing very obvious border runs.

You apparently been getting 30 day visa exempt entries not a 15 day visa on arrival that is only available for the those from certain countries. I see no reason for not being able to the another 30 day entry.

There is no official 6 month rule for tourist visas or visa exempt entries.

 

10 hours ago, Danny Morris said:

Is there any way around this, or do you have to have the plane tickets booked before applying for the tourist visa?

You do not have to have a round trip ticket. You only need a ticket to Thailand and ticket out to anywhere. 

For the ticket to here they will likely accept a train or bus ticket for a overland entry.

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Ok guys... here my story (WALL OF TEXT):

 

I've been in Thailand a year in 2012-2013 on SETV/Visa exempt, then when back to Canada. Then from October 2015 to now all in Thailand on SETV/Visa exempt except for about a year half 2017 to half 2018 I was in Cambodia. It's my 2nd passport and it's at page 23, so two-third full.

 

I have a Thai GF since late 2015 who travel with me every time. I have avoided both BKK and Phuket airport since coming back in 2015 because I know how brutal they are with the crackdown. We have lived mostly in Chiang Mai and around Khon Kaen (we are now in Chum Phae).

 

Everything was fine up until 2 months ago. I try to back to back Tourist visa attempt in Savannakhet. They didn't even take my passport because they told my GF I had the "too many tourist visa" stamp which I receive 3 months prior also in Savannakhet. They told her that even if I try, I would get denied so they are saving me time. I didn't even notice that stamp which is 100% my fault.

 

Long story short we then took the bus from Savannakhet to Luang Prabang, and then we flew direct flight from Luang Prabang to Chiang Mai (the only way to avoid BKK). I got my first 30 days visa exempt by air in 2019 (already got the two by land). It was actually my only time entering by air this year (others were exempt or tourist visa from Laos, as I live near the border). I don't think being my first time by air in 2019 is that relevant but never know. Chiang Mai was easy, before going to the counter some officer was reading the arrival card of everyone to ask for their reason to be in Thailand. I told him I had a Thai GF and pointed to her. I was not asked anything else, nor anything at the counter.

 

Anyways, fast forward now, my plan for 2020 is set. I will do the two border run and then either get a new passport with probably 5-6 pages left, or get married and get the proper visa. BUT, I still have one exit-entry to do this year (I have to leave at worse November 30).

 

The cheapest option for me/Thai GF (she always travel with me), is to direct flight KK - Hat Yai (1.5k baht each), and then take whatever bus or train to Kuala Lumpur and the next day fly back KL to Surat Thani (which is crazy cheap like 750 baht each), and then bus or train back to KK. I've done worse before.

 

I could also do a Tourist visa in KL. I have not been in Malaysia since 2016, and my last tourist visa there... I don't even think I ever got one. My friend got one few months back and he has been here 10 years and he told me the process was easy. The issue with that option is that it will be overall way more costly and I don't think it will increase my chance in Surat Thani airport. I don't think visa exempt or tourist visa matter anymore, they are both equivalent by air entry, it's totally up to IO.

 

The third option could be to get a tourist visa in Kuala Lumpur and try to fly to Laos to land entry from there, as IO there know me and laugh everytime I try to come in. Land entry in Nong Khai and Mukdahan are just as easy as Mae Sai. Very very easy no question asked, but I am out of border run.

 

Another option is to try to go to Vietnam for a SETV, I actually never went to Vietnam but if I am denied there how the **** am I getting back in while avoiding BKK? (I could go to CM from Vietnam if denied but I was in CM 2 months ago), this is why I want to try Surat Thani.

 

So to me it comes down to Surat Thani. I know that BKK, Phuket, Krabi, etc, are tough, and Chiang Mai a piece of cake but I would like to avoid back-to-back 30 days visa exempt from there. 

 

So yeah if Surat Thani is easy I will try to KL - Surat Thani, but if not, what is my best option? This will most likely be my last ever visa exempt entry ever, as i'm tired of this.

 

Thx!

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