The Thai Retirement Visa allows a qualified individual to stay in Thailand for a year and it can also be renewed every year be it within the Kingdom, his country of residence or his home country.
This type of visa is also referred to as One Year Extension of Stay Based on Retirement but it is formally known as the Non-Immigrant “O-A” Long Stay Visa.
Although relatively simple to apply, the applicant has to meet the requirements in order to qualify. Also, depending on his documents, he may either submit his application with the Thai Embassy in his home country or he may also do so within the borders of the Kingdom.
Qualifications for Thai Retirement Visa
The following are the standard qualifications for applicants of this type of Thai visa.
- Age – the applicant should be fifty (50) years old and above by the time he submits his application. Even if he is able to meet the majority of the requirements and yet he is not yet 50 years old or above, still he will not qualify for the said visa.
- Financial Requirements – the applicant must satisfy the financial requirement through one of the three (3) available options.
- Option 1 – He must have a Thai Bank Account with deposits of at least 800,000 Baht. The amount should have come from a foreign source and that it has been in the account for at least 2 months prior to the submission of his application. This can be proven by way of an updated passbook or a passbook plus a bank letter certifying the source and amount.
- Option 2 – He should have a monthly income (from overseas source) or monthly pension of not less than 65,000 Baht. He can secure an affidavit from his home country’s embassy or consulate as an attestation of this fund.
- Option 3 – He can also prove that he is in financial capacity to be a retiree in Thailand by providing evidences that a combination of his monthly income/pension and bank deposit would total to 800,000 Baht annually.
- The applicant must be able to present evidences that he is of good character and in good health however these certificates will only be required if the application has been done outside of Thailand and on certain countries only.
Needed Documents for Thai Retirement Visa
- Passport with at least 18 months validity
- Photos (passport-sized and taken within 6 months)
- Copies of fully filled-up application forms
- Copies of bank statements or updated passbook or both
- Notarized copies of police certificates
- Notarized copies of medical certificates
Thai Retirement Visa Application Process
An applicant has two options in applying for a Thai Retirement Visa:
Direct Application of the Non-Immigrant “O-A” Visa
He may submit his application with the Thai Embassy or Consulate in his home country. If qualified, the embassy or consulate will grant a non-immigrant “O-A” visa to the applicant. This may be multiple or single entry as the case may be. Validity will be for a year starting on the date such visa has been issued.
However, applicants are advised to inquire at the Thai Embassy or Consulate in his home country to ascertain whether such visa is issued there or not as not all embassies of Thailand can issued this visa type.
The applicant may choose to apply for a different non-immigrant visa at the Thai Embassy or Consulate in his home country. Once granted, he will then travel to Thailand and apply for a one year extension of stay within the country’s borders only that he should understand and remember that he must wait for at least 60 days while in Thailand or he should have at least 21 days left in his current permit to stay before he can lodge such visa extension application.
Apart from the stated documents above, he will also need to submit other documents such as proof of address in Thailand.
Income sourced from outside Thailand and not from within.
Retirement Visa holders are not allowed to work in Thailand more so be issued with a work permit. This means to say that a retiree in the Kingdom with a Non-Immigrant “O-A” Visa is not allowed to earn income sourced within Thailand while having such visa.
The 90-Day Reporting
The retiree is required to report with the Immigration Office once every 90 days and inform it on his addresses in Thailand however this is not required if the retiree is not within the Thai border on the 90th day.
The retiree may also choose to report to the office in person, by mail or through a representative by executing a Power of Attorney on that person to provide him with legal capacity to do so.
There will be no need for the retiree to obtain a multiple re-entry permit if he intends to stay in Thailand the whole duration of his retirement visa’s validity. However, it is more advisable for him to obtain the multiple re-entry permit instead of the single entry because he might just need to leave Thailand all of a sudden for an emergency back home otherwise the visa will be cancelled if he only has the single entry and he leaves the country before the visa expiry date.
When renewing for another year, the retiree may use the same set of documents except for the documents pertaining to the funds in his Thai bank account.
The applicant should have another set of funds (800,000 Baht or monthly offshore-sourced income of 65,000 Baht or a combination of both totaling 800,000 Baht) and these deposits should be have been in the account for at least 3 months prior to application for an extension.