Chances are, the New Year presents new and exciting opportunities to many individuals. For those who felt they missed out on their career in the year that passed, they look forward to the beginning of the year to bring some significant and positive changes in their professional lives.
One opportunity could be working in Asia, Thailand in particular. The Kingdom of Thailand is no stranger to foreign expats as a lot of foreign investors have long been present in the country. The diverse business communities – automakers, telecommunications, consumer product manufacturers, etc. provide a wide array of opportunities for foreigners with the right qualifications and experience to come to Thailand to work.
The question then that comes to your mind if you are playing with the idea of working in Thailand is, “What visa do I need to be able to come to Thailand and eventually work?”
Some companies that see the need for some foreign talents to contribute to the operations of the business have to fulfill certain requirements in order to get the permit for their workers (foreign nationals) to work in the country. But before any work permit is granted to any foreign national that wishes to work in Thailand, it is important to know the type of visa you should have to facilitate the work permit processing.
There is no such thing as Thai work visa. Many people are confused and think that if you have a Thai business visa, it is already equivalent to a permit to work in Thailand. This wrong notion often leads to immigration problems which the employers are forced by circumstances to deal with.
Employers and workers should know that Thai business visa does not in any way allow you to work in Thailand. If you are caught working in Thailand without a work permit, you stand the risk of being arrested or deported after appearing in court. The essence of Thai business visa is to allow you or your employer to apply for your work permit.
Thai business visa is usually a 3-month visa. Upon entering Thailand, you are given three months to either process the application for work permit or leave the country before the visa validity expires. From experience and due to reported abuse of this particular type of visa, many embassies in Asia do not issue the visa until all relevant and correct documentation are presented. Such documentation includes:
If on the other hand you are applying for a Thai media visa, you first need to apply for a press card from the Thailand government. When you have the press card, you can already apply for a visa in Thailand, and eventually for a work permit. The following documents are required for Thai media visa processing:
In order to help you and make sure that you are on the right track, it is best to have a Thai lawyer or a legal firm that has a good understanding of the different requirements and needs, processing procedures, fees, etc. You don’t want to end up having the wrong visa and which you can’t use to apply for a work permit.