An Overview of the Long-Term Visas in Thailand
If you're a foreigner looking to stay in Thailand long-term, there are a variety of options available. Whether you're thinking about staying for work, study, or family reasons, there's a visa to meet your needs and budget.
If you plan to work from Thailand, you can apply for an LTR visa, which allows you to live and work in the Kingdom for 10 years. The program aims to attract 'high-potential' foreigners who can contribute to the country's economic growth.
Thai Elite Visa
The Thai Elite Visa is one of the most popular long-term visas in Thailand. It's a privilege entry visa that gives you residency in Thailand along with a variety of complimentary services and benefits.
The program is managed by Thailand Privilege Card Company Limited (TPC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sport. It offers eight different options for participation, each with a specific set of requirements, costs, and advantages.
For a relatively low fee, you can get an Elite Visa that lasts for five years or longer depending on which membership you choose. The cheapest option is the “Elite Easy Access” membership for 600,000 baht while the highest value membership is the “Elite Superiority Extension” for 1 million baht.
This program also allows you to skip the long and time-consuming process of completing border control at the airports. Instead, you can go through a special lane with a Thailand Elite Visa agent who will handle everything for you.
In addition to airport services, Thailand Elite members enjoy exclusive privileges and discounts at restaurants, hotels, spas, golf courses, hospitals and medical facilities. Some of these discounts depend on the establishment's policies and other conditions.
Long-Term Resident Visa Thailand
The Long Term Resident Visa Thailand is a program that aims to attract a 'high-potential' group of people, ranging from high net-worth individuals, wealthy retirees, and highly skilled workers to remote workers (digital nomads). It provides a range of tax and non-tax benefits.
The LTR visa consists of a 10-year residency permit and a digital work permit which allows the applicant to pursue gainful activity in Thailand, including the possibility of self-employment or conducting a business on their own. It also offers a number of other benefits, including a flat 17% tax rate on incomes and the removal of several bureaucratic requirements.
To qualify for an LTR visa, applicants should have a personal income of at least US$80,000 per year. They must also be engaged in the targeted industry, a higher education institution or research institution, a specialized training institution, or a Thai government agency.
A foreigner’s spouse and children under 20 years of age can be included in the application as dependents. However, the total number of dependents must not exceed four for every LTR visa holder.
The visa can be issued at a Thai embassy or consulate overseas or at the Immigration Bureau in Thailand. Alternatively, qualified applicants can collect their digital work permits from the One Stop Service Centre for Visa and Work Permit, Chamchuri Square Building, Bangkok or at provincial labor offices.
Retirement Visa in Thailand
The Retirement Visa is one of the most popular long-term visas in Thailand. It allows expats aged 50+ to stay in the country for a year.
Applicants must have at least six months of lease or property ownership in Thailand and a bank account with at least 800,000 THB. The applicant must also submit an updated passbook or bank book and a bank letter showing that the funds were deposited at a foreign institution at least 3 months prior to applying for the Retirement Visa in Thailand.
A retirement visa is valid for a year and can be renewed by providing the same documentation. However, the required amount of money in the holder’s bank account must be at least three months old before it can be renewed.
To apply for a Retirement Visa in Thailand, expats must submit an application to the Thai Embassy or consulate in their home country. They must provide proof of insurance, health checkups, and a criminal background check.
Retirement visas are easy to obtain and can be a great option for people who are looking for a long-term stay in Thailand. They do have a few restrictions, however, including reporting to immigration every 90 days and not being allowed to work in Thailand.