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Non Immigrant-O Visa

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Yes you can.

The important point is why do you want an O visa?

Planning retirement in Thailand?

The O visa gives you time to apply for a retirement visa while staying here.

800,000 Baht in a Thai bank for 60 days prior to application. Forms. Photos etc.

Google

Thailand O visa immigration

For official sites

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I've been told I need a Non-Immigrant O visa prior to applying for a Retirement Visa.

I'm retired and have ample retirement income (over $5000 monthly). I plan (hopefully) to stay in Thailand from September to May beginning next year. I currently am booked for 2-60 day trips (September And January) and wanted to know if I could do the application process in Thailand when I arrive there. The nearest Thai consulates to my home here in upstate New York are a 5-6 hour drive and doing it through the mail would seem to be a bit burdensome.

I plan on visiting an immigration specialist in Thailand in September to inquire about the Visa's, but I'm sure they'll charge me a pretty penny for that. 

I'm trying to find out the easiest and less expensive way to apply for the Retirement Visa. I've gone to the Immigration websites, but I'm left with many questions concerning the process. If need be I can do it here in the U.S., but if it's possible to do it in Thailand it would be beneficial to me.

I have proof of income and citizenship status, but I believe I may also need a background check and medical status validation here before I go to Thailand. Are those items necessary ??

Appreciate any information anyone may have.                      Thanks

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Arrive

Visit immigration

Start retirement visa.

If you are relying on income rather than capital deposit this must be endorsed by your Embassy here in Thailand each year upon renewal.

Capital is about 25k USD.

Put on fixed term deposit and use each year for renewal. Treat it like an emergency fund which is there if you need it - just make sure it is above 800,000 Baht 3 months prior to renewal.

Edited by Streetwalker

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I'll be relying on my retirement income ($5000+).  Don't have the funds to establish a bank balance in the amount required.

How do I go about receiving income verification. Just go to my home embassy with proof of income and ask for a verification letter??

Is it necessary to have a background check and medical endorsement?  I have no problem with either, but is it necessary?  The medical documentation can be merely a letter from my physician stating I am in good health?  The background check can be provided by any law enforcement agency here in New York?

I can go to any Thai immigration office in Thailand to begin the process?  I'll be arriving in September and spending a week or so in Pattaya and then going to Buriram for a month or more.  Better to try Jomtien or Buriram immigration? 

One last question......Is it better to hire an immigration specialist and pay the baht for his services?

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21 minutes ago, flamesfan7 said:

I'll be relying on my retirement income ($5000+).  Don't have the funds to establish a bank balance in the amount required.

How do I go about receiving income verification. Just go to my home embassy with proof of income and ask for a verification letter??

Is it necessary to have a background check and medical endorsement?  I have no problem with either, but is it necessary?  The medical documentation can be merely a letter from my physician stating I am in good health?  The background check can be provided by any law enforcement agency here in New York?

I can go to any Thai immigration office in Thailand to begin the process?  I'll be arriving in September and spending a week or so in Pattaya and then going to Buriram for a month or more.  Better to try Jomtien or Buriram immigration? 

One last question......Is it better to hire an immigration specialist and pay the baht for his services?

I have a Retirement visa based on income and did it all in Thailand. I could have gone the 800,000 baht in the bank... but did not want to go that way.

For the medical certificate... just go to a local clinic and get one. I was not asked for a background check paperwork at all... but if you have it... attach it..

As I am an Aussie... I had to go to the Aussie Embassy in Bkk and make a Sat Dec about my income which they sign and put the Embassy stamp on. All Thai Immigration was interested in/looked at was that the stamp was there. The Aussie Embassy on their website say you had to have proof of income which I had but I was not asked. There was a payment of 1780baht for them to sign and stamp the paperwork The Aussie Embassy had the form there that was needed to fill out. I am sure your Embassy would work along the same lines. 

Before I got my first retirement visa... I visited the Thai Immigration and asked what did they want from me. They gave me a list... annotated the bits of information I had to supply. Off I went... got it all..... put it in a folder and numbered it as they had ticked off..... presented it. To me... once I knew what they wanted.... it was easy to do..... so did it myself.

 

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On 7/27/2018 at 5:40 PM, flamesfan7 said:

I've been told I need a Non-Immigrant O visa prior to applying for a Retirement Visa.

I'm retired and have ample retirement income (over $5000 monthly). I plan (hopefully) to stay in Thailand from September to May beginning next year. I currently am booked for 2-60 day trips (September And January) and wanted to know if I could do the application process in Thailand when I arrive there. The nearest Thai consulates to my home here in upstate New York are a 5-6 hour drive and doing it through the mail would seem to be a bit burdensome.

I plan on visiting an immigration specialist in Thailand in September to inquire about the Visa's, but I'm sure they'll charge me a pretty penny for that. 

I'm trying to find out the easiest and less expensive way to apply for the Retirement Visa. I've gone to the Immigration websites, but I'm left with many questions concerning the process. If need be I can do it here in the U.S., but if it's possible to do it in Thailand it would be beneficial to me.

I have proof of income and citizenship status, but I believe I may also need a background check and medical status validation here before I go to Thailand. Are those items necessary ??

Appreciate any information anyone may have.                      Thanks

First of all: the cheapest way is, to do it by yourself. (I only use a -relatively- cheap agent here in CM to reduce queuing time, which isn't a problem in Jomtien).

There are 3 types of "Non-Immigrant-O" for "tourists" over 50:

S aka Simple, gives you 90 days once, only valid for 1 entry !

M aka Multiple, gives you 90 days each for a duration of 365 days

A aka Approved, because they check additional requirements -  that's the colloquial named Retirement Visa, but in official Thai speak an " Extension of Stay", allowing you to stay 365 days.

Type O-S and O-M have lower income requirements and as far as I am informed, you can only apply for them in your home country.

For O-A, you can apply in your home country, as well as in Thailand. I also came first to Thailand based on an O-M, which I replaced after 1 year with an O-A.

I had also the assumption that you had to have first a O-S or O-M from your Thai embassy at home, before getting an O-A, but it seems, now even a 30-day visa exemption is sufficient. I would recommend to check with the Thaivisa.com forum - as usual, a lot of trolls, but the infos from moderator UbonJoe are reliable.

For the proof of income, get some supporting papers and go to one of your embassies /consulates in Thailand - it should be daily business for them, however - that letter might be more expensive than the visa 555. 5000$ is more than enough, you only need 65000 baht monthly. (It might even be worthwhile considering to state a lower amount than 5000$, at least, that was the recommendation of one of the consuls.)

When coming first to Thailand, I had a federal police background check (expensive and requires 6 weeks 555) and a health certificate: on my 3rd O-A now, and I was never asked for one of those in Jomtien and Chiang Mai.

However, one thing often not mentioned: Immigration will ask for some evidence of your stay. A " housebook" you won't most likely not have, so have a longterm rental contract at hand (hotel confirmations are often rejected). And make sure, your landlord has notified immigration of your stay -at least here in Chiang Mai, they are really keen on that, having a screen shot or copy helps to shorten the process. (Google TM.28)

Worth considering is a "Multiple Entry Permit" directly when applying for O-A, because otherwise your O-A gets invalid, if you make trips abroad! Expensive, AFAIR 1800 baht, but gives you peace of mind. (However, you can also buy a single reentry permit, at immigration, when leaving via Suvarnabhumi airport).

There is a shop outside of Jomtien Immigration, where you can get copies of your papers and passport photos. Depending on the immigration office, you will need 2 or 3 copies of all papers. Each copy page needs your signature. And 2 or 3 passport photos. Make also copies of your arrival card and your rental contract. 

If you pickup your new visa, ask for a "Certificate of Stay" at immigration - most banks are asking for that.

If you are staying longer than 90 days, consider getting a Thai Driving Licence, because your International DL gets invalid! 

 

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Thanks so much. You have provided more clarity for me than I've been able to receive on most web sites. I really appreciate it.

My "evidence of stay" is gonna be a bit of a problem.  I plan on traveling around and I won't have bookings for my entire stay. Previously I've only stayed for 1-2 month periods and had booked a hotel for the entire period and the hotel had given me a certificate . When I begin staying longer I'll only have "evidence of stay"for perhaps the first month and not my entire trip. Not sure how to get around that.

Once again thanks for your help. 

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On 7/29/2018 at 5:05 PM, flamesfan7 said:

Thanks so much. You have provided more clarity for me than I've been able to receive on most web sites. I really appreciate it.

My "evidence of stay" is gonna be a bit of a problem.  I plan on traveling around and I won't have bookings for my entire stay. Previously I've only stayed for 1-2 month periods and had booked a hotel for the entire period and the hotel had given me a certificate . When I begin staying longer I'll only have "evidence of stay"for perhaps the first month and not my entire trip. Not sure how to get around that.

Once again thanks for your help. 

My first few months, I staid in Pattaya, I also moved around a lot, to get a feeling for different locations (also not bad to check a condo building, before committing for longer), staying in several apartments and rooms booked via Agoda and AirBnB - I had at that time a Nonimmigrant O-M visa.

A workaround for you might be a serviced apartment, issuing you a letter with something like: "Mr. Flamesfan7 has rented our apartment 1234, he is staying in our house since 07/29/2018." Even, if it is only for a month, they are stating the truth, only leaving out the end date.

Edited by insearchofxxx

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Thanks Soidog. I may contact you in the future should I need further assistance. Thanks for your input and wish me luck in September. Hopefully everything will work out.

If need be I can always spend a little money and have an agent do the paperwork for me.  LOL

I have time to take care of this matter.  Booked for 2 months in September and 2 more months in January. That should offer me plenty of time to procure the Retirement Visa by September next year for extended stays.

Thanks again. I appreciate it.

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I have always used this guide. O-A is better done all in country. Jomtien immigration will lead you through and advise of any issues. Do it yourself and save your money; don't use agents. They do nothing you cannot do yourself. I used the stat-dec for a number of years, but started to hear stories of knock backs in 2017 from Jomtien. There was no absolute reason why some were rejected and others were accepted. I know of one personally who was rejected and told to use an agent; sure he would have dressed poorly and acted in an antagonizing manner towards staff. I now use the 800k in the bank and that expedites things even further.

http://www.pattayacityexpatsclub.com/expats/docs/retirementvisachecklist.pdf

Who said the pattaya expats were just a bunch of useless hot-aired dinosaurs.

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