For almost three years now, crackdowns on foreigners holding immigrant and non-immigrant visas in Thailand have been commonplace. As a result, some foreign nationals are now reluctant to go to Thailand in fear that these crackdowns might send them back home.
The answer to the question, however, is: No. You should not be afraid of the visa crackdowns. They are actually to your benefit as expatriates, provided that you have enough documentation to show to the authorities that you have permission from the Kingdom to stay for a certain period of time.
What you should be thinking about then, is how you can make sure that these visa crackdowns will not be to your detriment as a foreign expatriate. Here are some stuff that you might want to think about.
Say goodbye to using the tourist visa and visa runs to prolong your stay in Thailand indefinitely. These are, in fact, the very reasons why visa crackdowns have taken place. The authorities want to make sure that everyone in the country is holding the right visas and documentation to support their residence in the Kingdom.
Thus, if you’re planning to stay in Thailand for a specific purpose, it’s time to look the requirements up online. Specific visas have specific requirements in terms of accompanying documentation in the application phase. Fortunately, student and employment visas do require your sponsor (school or employer) to assist you in the process in terms of the documentation.
Immigrant visas are a different thing, but the documentation required is easier to obtain. If you’re planning to marry in Thailand, all you have to do is to show proof that you are in a relationship with a local and then support that later on with the marriage documents that are compulsory after a marriage ceremony.
All of this information is easily available on our website, so you need not look anywhere else.
Every now and then, authorities will introduce a change into the rules. This is why you should always keep an eye out on the news. This makes sure that, while you’re holding valid documents, you know what to do if there’s a need to update the government when new information comes up that concern your stay in the Kingdom.
This is especially applicable for those whose documentation is about to expire and new measures are suddenly laid out in applying for an extension of their visas. You might experience delays and difficulties in your application if you’re working with outdated information.
Fortunately for you, information is easily available on the Internet so it shouldn’t be difficult at all to brush oneself up with new measures and rules formulated the Bureau of Immigration, and other concerned authorities.
The Kingdom has always been transparent in updating its foreign expatriates on new rules and regulations that require them. It’s up to you as an expat to do your research, and do your part in obtaining the needed documentation.
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Photo credit : Duane Storey