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What Is The Thai Retirement Visa?

Are you thinking of retiring to Thailand? Are you curious about the requirements to obtain a long-term visa in Thailand?
This post will explain what financial requirements and documents are required to be eligible for a Thailand retirement Visa.

What is it?

Thai retirees can apply for a non-immigrant O/OA long stay visa or Thai retirement visa. This visa allows qualified retirees over 50 who meet the financial requirements to live in Thailand for upto one year. As long as the applicant continues to meet the financial requirements, the one-year visa may be renewed each year.

You must be at least fifty years old and not have a criminal record in Thailand or your home country. Additionally, you must have no prohibited diseases. The Thai Embassy lists these as Leprosy and Tuberculosis.

To be eligible for a non-immigrant O/OA visa, you will also need one of these financial documents:

You can get copies of your bank statements proving a deposit of at least 800,000 baht into your Thai bank account.
Notarized bank statements proving income of at least 65,000 baht per monthly, along with an affidavit of your consulate or embassy as proof of income.
A combination of a deposit account with a monthly income of at least 800,000. baht

Each country’s requirements can vary and are subject to change. The Elite Visa is available if you are having difficulty getting a retirement visa.
Health Insurance

A new regulation requires you to have health insurance that covers you for 400,000 baht IPD coverage, and 40,000 baht OPD coverage if you want to apply for or extend your retirement visa.

Official confirmation of the new regulation was made at the end October 31st 2019.

It seems that only local insurance is currently accepted.

How to Apply

A retirement visa can be applied for in either your country of origin (in certain cases), or in Thailand.
Inside Thailand

You’ll first need to prepare all required financial documents.

Passport with at least six month validity and two blank pages on either side
Photos taken within the past six months measuring 4 cm x6 cm
An updated bank passbook
A bank letter confirming your funds within two months of the date you applied
A health certificate is not required if you are in Thailand.
A police/background check certificate

*To obtain a bank letter, visit the branch where your account was opened. You will need to provide proof that your funds were available on the date you applied. Depending on the bank, this letter can cost a few hundred baht. It can usually be completed within one hour, and it can be sent the same day.

You can then go to the Bangkok Division 1 Immigration Office.

All the documents in this section, as well as the requirements section, should be brought with you.

You will need to apply for an O non-immigrant visa O in most cases before you can extend your Thai visa into a OA visa. You will be granted 90 days to stay in the kingdom. After your 60-day period, you will be eligible to apply for an OA visa for one year.
Outside Thailand

You will apply for an OA visa for non-immigrants if you are applying for your retirement visa in Thailand. To apply for your retirement visa outside of Thailand, you will need to bring the above documents to the nearest Thai Embassy.

It is possible to obtain a Thai financial statement or proof of income from your country if you do not have a Thai bank card.

However, don’t be surprised to hear that the embassy doesn’t offer this type of visa for foreigners. Not all embassy’s do.

Non-immigrant OA long-term visa allows you to retire in Thailand after one year. It can also be renewed every year from within Thailand.

When applying for your non-immigrant OA Visa, you have two options: one-entry or multiple entry.
Single-entry

You can apply for a single-entry, non-immigrant visa OA if you don’t intend to leave Thailand during your retirement visa. You must apply for a permit to re-enter the country if you need to leave, either for leisure or for an emergency.
Multiple-entry

Multiple-entry OA visas allow you to leave Thailand and come back as many times as you want. If you are certain that you will be traveling a lot while living in Thailand, you should get a multiple-entry visa right away.

No matter if you are applying inside or outside Thailand, you will need to complete 90-day checks at Thailand immigration once your visa has been granted.
Visa Restrictions

Retirees with a retirement visa are not allowed to engage in any kind of work.
How to extend your visa

If your visa is nearing expiration, you will need to renew it at one of the Thai immigration offices. It’s the same process as when you applied. You should begin your renewal process at least 15 days before your visa expires. If Thai Immigration requests additional documents, this will allow you ample time to make adjustments.

You can renew your visa in Thailand by reapplying at the nearest Thai Embassy.
Other retirement visas

If Thailand is on your radar, here are some other options.
Five-year retirement visa

A five-year Thai retirement visa allows wealthy retirees from 14 nations to stay up to five years in Thailand. These countries are: Australia, Canada. Denmark. Germany. Finland. France. Italy. Japan. Netherlands. Norway. Sweden. Switzerland. United Kingdom. The OX visa, which is non-immigrant and valid for five years, can be renewed every five years.

These requirements are slightly different. To be eligible for a non-immigrant OX 10 year visa, you’ll need to have the following:

3 million baht must be kept in a bank account for at least three years from the date of your application.
Monthly income of 100,000 baht
You can get health insurance with up to $10,000 coverage (non-optional).

The application process for non-immigrant O visas is identical. Only difference is that you will need a re-entry permit at the end.
Thailand Elite Visa Program (Privilege Entry Visa).

Although technically the Elite Thai Visa is not a retirement visa, it can be used to obtain one. It is a valid option for wealthy foreigners who want to stay in Thailand long-term and avoid visa extensions and runs.

Dependent on the membership package, qualified foreigners may stay in Thailand for up to five years.

The best part about the Thailand Elite Visa? It significantly reduces paperwork and hassles, and keeps you up-to-date with ever-changing retirement visa requirements.

With the Elite visa, you don’t have to keep 800,000.baht in your bank account.

Many retirees are now eligible for the Elite Visa, even though they may not be eligible for retirement visa.

Marriage Visa

You can apply for a non-immigrant visa O on the basis of marriage if you are married to a Thai citizen. It is easier to meet the financial requirements. This visa is ideal for people who don’t have sufficient funds to obtain a retirement visa.
Now, let’s move on to you

This is how you can get a Thailand retirement Visa. If you have all the documents and meet the financial requirements, the process is easy.

Double-check the above list and get in touch with your Thai embassy or Thai immigration office.