How to get a 60 day Thailand tourist visa

Last updated July 19, 2014

If you wish to stay longer than 30 days in Thailand you should apply for a 60 day Thailand tourist visa.

 

You should do this for several reasons

  • You can’t just book a return ticket with a return flight later than 29 days after your arrival. The airlines (or – more unlikely – the immigration officers) might notice that and refuse boarding (or immigration).

  • Don’t be anxious to book a flight ticket with return or onward flight 59 days later! If you fulfil the formal criteria for a tourist visa you will get the visa (well, there isn’t a guarantee of course). Just be polite and exactly follow the instructions.

  • You can get a tourist visa for Thailand in a Thai embassy or consulate in every country except Thailand itself. You don’t have to return to your home country to apply for one.

 

Warning regarding visas in a row

If you have a new 60 day Thailand tourist visa in your passport and the last stay in Thailand was in the same year or one year before, the Thai authorities might not let you into the country. The exact criteria are unclear (as of now in July 2014) and depend on the immigration officer and how that person interprets the rules. Best is to arrive in Thailand by airport, as the immigration officers in airport are most professional and less likely to give you a hard time without a good reason.

How to get a 60 day Thailand tourist visa

 

To get a 60 day Thailand tourist visa you currently have to provide the following

(done in the Thai consulate in Zurich, Switzerland):

  • Passport valid longer than half a year after your return flight or onward flight.

  • Return flight ticket or single flight ticket with an onward ticket out of Thailand (printouts of the flight confirmations)

  • Two passport photos not older than six months

  • A filled-out visa form downloadable on most Thai consulate or Thai embassy web-pages.

  • Money for the visa fee (depends on the country you’re in)

  • If you do it by mail: Money for returning your passport by mail plus a postpaid return envelope with your address written on it

  • Even if not asked for: Phone number where they can reach you in case of questions

 

Allow two weeks of time for the whole process. If you need it within 5 working days it’s better to show up in person. If you need it even quicker ask for a more expensive express-service.

Tips for the 60 day Thailand tourist visa

  • The arrival day counts as the first day of your stay. This means, that you can only stay 59 days and not two full months. This is a common misunderstanding!

  • You can extend a 60 day Thailand tourist visa a further 30 days in an immigration office in Thailand. But since you usually have to prove your flight back to the airline during check-in I actually don’t know why that is of any use? It only works if you have a flexible ticket, where you can adjust the return date.

  • If you plan to travel for a longer time in South East Asia (no return flight booked) and your first country is Thailand book a single flight to Thailand and 59 days later a single flight (not a return flight – see below why) to another country. Otherwise you might have problems getting a visa or during check-in.

  • Some embassies or consulates might additionally ask for a valid address during your stay or for a proof of funds of 20’000 Baht per month. If you are asked for an address give them the address of the first hotel where you will stay. If you stay with Thai friends ask them to write a confirmation letter for you.

  • Not every consulate or embassy might ask for all the documents listed above. But if you can provide all this you are on the safe side.

 

Developments concerning globetrotters in Thailand

  • Thailand has been getting stricter with the visas recently. In Sydney, January 2011, I could still get a 60 day visa by just providing my passport, a filled form and a passport photo. 15 months later in Europe that was different. And from August 2014 they will again become stricter!
    To be fair I’d like to mention, that getting a Schengen (Europe) holiday visa for Thai people is also complicated.

  • It becomes more difficult to use Thailand as a travel hub. When I applied for my 60 day visa I booked a flight from Zurich to Bangkok and 59 days later a return flight Bangkok – Rangoon. The consulate staff told me, they can’t grant me the visa, if I return to Thailand later again. So I additionally had to book a single flight from Rangoon to Kuala Lumpur to make it work.
    Use Kuala Lumpur or anywhere in Malaysia as a place to stay inbetween your travel trips to different countries. There are endless flight options to many places from there with Air Asia. As a plus Malaysia grants 90 day stays on arrival to most countries in Europe and also to Australia, Canada and the USA.
    Singapore is also suitable as a South East Asia hub, but more expensive obviously.

 

No more visa runs from August 2014 allowed !!!

  • A visa run means to just leave Thailand for a few hours or days and to return to get another 30 day stay in Thailand, if you arrive by plane or by land if you are citizen of a G7 country, or a 15 day stay, if you immigrate through a land border.

 

You want to stay in Thailand even longer? A one year education visa might be the right thing for you.

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