THB - ฿

Home - News - Ways of being in Thailand for foreigners
01.03.2024 13:32

Ways of being in Thailand for foreigners

Ways of being in Thailand for foreigners

Today the state of Thailand, or rather the kingdom is a paradise for many foreigners, for many years Russian people choose it for vacation or for a long stay in the country. This is not surprising, because even arriving in some cities of this country, already at the airport you can see signs in Russian, which suggests that the state itself is happy to welcome Russians! 

But what if you want to not just rest 2 weeks in Thailand, and stay longer? For a minute, the Thai government has declared 2024 - the year of the expat. Let's figure out what are the ways to spend much more time in this warm country:

1. Short-term visa-free travel. As of today, there is a visa-free agreement between Russia and Thailand. By the way, until April 30, 2024, this visa can be extended for up to 90 days.

If you plan to stay in the country for a longer period of time, you will need to visit the Thai embassy in Russia and apply for a visa from the list below:

2. Tourist Visa. There are two types of this visa: TR for single entry for 60 days (+ 30 days can be extended) and METV for 6 months with one visit or 7 months with three visits. 

3. non-immigrant visas for up to 90 days:

- B visa for investors;

- B visa for businessmen and employees of Thai companies;

- ED visa for students;

- R visa for missionaries and religious workers;

- M visa for journalists and movie producers;

- O-A visa for wealthy foreigners over 50 years old;

- O visa for family members.

So, moving on to long-term visas:

4. Smart visa. It can be obtained by specialists, investors, managers, owners of startups, as well as family members of the applicant who can make a significant contribution to the development of the economy. This visa is issued for 4 years. Its types are:

- Smart visa T for experts in the field of science and technology. The applicant must have an employment contract with a Thai accredited company and have an income of 100,000 baht ( $2840) or more. For experts in startups, the income threshold is lowered to 50,000 baht ($1,420).

- Smart Visa I for Investors. A foreigner can invest from 20 million baht ($568,000) in an accredited company in one of Thailand's target industries. If the investor invests in a startup, the minimum investment amount is reduced to 5 million baht ($142,000)

- Smart Visa E for executives of high-tech companies.

Applicant must have a bachelor's degree or higher and 10 years or more experience in the field. The minimum income is 200,000 baht ($5,700)

- Smart Visa S for aspiring entrepreneurs and startup founders. The applicant must own a quarter of the charter capital of the startup company and prove an account balance of 600,000 baht ($17,000). The visa is issued for 6 months, one year or two years depending on the stage of development of the project: planned, incubated or already in operation.

- Smart Visa O for family members. Spouse and children under 20 years of age receive the same rights and benefits as the principal applicant. A deposit of 180,000 baht ($5,110) is required for each family member.

Holders of such visas can work in Thailand without additional permits. But 1 time a year you need to report your stay to the Thai immigration bureau.

5. LTR visa or long-term resident visa. It is intended for wealthy retirees (50 years old and above) and investors, professionals in various industries, as well as their family members who make/are making a significant contribution to the country's economy. With this visa you can live in the country for up to 10 years (five years + possibility of extension for the same period).

This visa is the Thai analog of a residence permit, which Russians can get only online (or rather apply online and get it already in Thailand)

To qualify for the visa, a foreigner must:

- Own assets worth 1 million $.

- Have an income of $80,000 per month for the last two years.

- Invest $500,000 or more in the Thai economy, for example, through the purchase of real estate or bonds.

- Take out medical insurance of $50,000 or $100,000 or more to guarantee medical treatment.

The consular fee for issuance of this visa in Thailand is 50,000 baht ($1,420).

6. Work Visa or Business Visa (Non-B).

- For a company employee if there is a Thai employer. You can get a work visa for 3 months in your country, then you can get a one-year work visa with the right to extend.

- For company founder. Business visa can be obtained by opening a Thai legal entity yourself. This visa is strongly not recommended for obtaining. As the cost of applying for it will be higher than for the elite visa (read about it below). 

7. Investment visa (Non-IB) for 1 year with the right to extend is issued to you if:

Acquired a property worth 10 million baht or more, or arranged it under a leasehold (long-term lease). Provided that it is only apartments in condominiums (not villas) and only in new buildings.

In addition to real estate, you can also invest in Thai government bonds or bonds of state-owned companies for the same amount or put money on deposit in a Thai bank.

8. Thailand Elite Visa. This type of visa is ideal for those who do not link their earnings to Thailand, i.e. successful digital nomads or people earning passive income. Securing one of the Thailand Elite visas gives you a number of benefits in the form of discounts and free services in Thailand. It has 4 categories:

- "Gold" for 5 years

Cost: 900,000 baht

- Platinum for 10 years

Cost: 1.5 million baht for the main applicant and 1 million baht for each family member joining.

- "Diamond" for 15 years

Cost: 2.5 million baht for the main applicant and 1.5 million baht for each joining family member

- Invitation visa for 20 years

The person must be invited by the Thailand Elite program itself.

As you can see, there is no full-fledged residence permit or permanent residence in Thailand, but the state itself is interested in foreigners staying in the country and contributing to its development. Therefore, they provide many alternatives, thanks to which you can stay in this country long-term!

We would like to remind you that the Housebook team are qualified professionals who can help you and your clients in all matters related to buying real estate, documentation and moving to Thailand.

Bellevue Lagoon
Bellevue Lagoon
Completion dateQ4 2024
Total areafrom 34 m² to 75 m²
Down payment
from 4 865 000 ฿