How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (2023)

If you're wondering how long you can stay in Thailand as a tourist, then you're actually wondering what visa options are currently available in the much-loved Land of Smiles. Let's get to the point - there are quite a few! Yes, border management in the land of peanut butter noodles and gleaming Buddhist temples can be a messy business.

Don't worry, because we are here to help you. We've put together this definitive guide to the most popular types of visas and documents that travelers will need to present in Bangkok. It goes through some of the most common and sought-after tickets offered to people traveling by air to Bangkok,Chiang Mai, and others.

It's a mixed bag because different visas are for different types of travelers. For example, you will not be able to apply for a work visa in Thailand if you simply come to see BKK's temples and relax on the beaches. Likewise, you cannot come in as a tourist and then start teaching English. Furthermore, certain types of visas are only available to certain nationalities, which makes things much more complicated.


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Visa Waiver (also called Visa Waiver) – 30 days

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (1)

There is a large list of 64 countries currently eligible for visa waivers for Thailand. Whether you come from the Pyrenees of Andorra or the ancient cities of Poland, the Andes of Peru or the deserts of Oman, you can count on this proven way to enter the Land of Smiles. Oh, and the United Kingdom and the United States are also on the list. Cool.

The reason this is a gift to include is that a visa waiver is by far the easiest way to buy some time in Thailand. Offers 30 consecutive days of entry. It's 100% free - yes, completely free. Oh, and it requires almost zero admin - no need to check in beforehand or fill out special forms or visit the Thai embassy before getting on the plane.

Obtaining a visa waiver is a very simple process. Just go through passport control when you land in Thailand, fill out one of the visa waiver forms, stand in line, get your stamp and bingo - you're done. This can only be done at international airports and border crossings and boat crossings. You can get a visa exemption as many times a year, except if you are returning to Thailand by land or sea, when this is limited to twice a year.

The 30-day visa waiver is also strictly for tourism purposes only. There are reports that Thai border authorities have become much more vigilant in enforcing this in recent years, as digital nomad travelers who have been returning to Thailand month after month are widely believed to have abused the exemption.

Visa on arrival (often confused with Visa Waiver) – 15 days

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (2)

If you are from a country that is not on the long visa waiver list for Thailand, all is not lost. There is another type of visa that you can get without the tedious application process: Visa on Arrival (VOA). Unfortunately, this one only offers 15 days in the Land of Smiles, so you'll have to be a little quicker on your walksthe big palaceand trips to the glittering islands of the bay!

There are currently nationalities from 19 countries that can use VOA, including India, Fiji, Georgia, Uzbekistan and Mexico. The list changes quite frequently, with new countries being added and dropped almost every year, so make sure you're still good before you travel.

(Video) All About Thai Visa 2023. How To stay Longer in Thailand

There are quite strict regulations when it comes to visas on arrival in Thailand. You will need to show proof of a return flight out of the country no later than 15 days in advance. You will also need your residential address in Thailand (most people provide the address of their first hotel). Oh, and you'll also need proof of travel funds worth at least 10,000 THB per person (about $300 USD).

One-time tourist visa - 60 days

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (3)

OOne-time tourist visa(SETV) is a great option if you are wondering how long you can stay in Thailand as a tourist and want more than the usual 30 day Visa Waiver offers. This is because this takes a total of 60 days. That's two full months in the Land of Smiles, which we think is the perfect time to visit almost all the sights, from the beaches of Koh Lipe in the south to the hippy bars of Pai in the north.

This will require a bit more administration. First, SETV cannot be obtained at the border when you arrive. You must apply before you even go to Thailand. This means visiting a Thai embassy or consulate elsewhere in the world (usually your country of residence, but not necessarily) to present all the necessary documentation, including a photocopy of your passport pages, flight information, your trip to Thailand, details of where you will be staying in Thailand when you arrive and three visa size photos.

There is also a fee. It is 40 USD for SETV or about 1000 THB. This must be paid at the time of application during your visit to the embassy, ​​so bring cash (in any local currency) with you when you go to the interview. Processing of this type of visa usually takes two days, but some consulates (London, LA) offer same-day service.

SETV can offer 60 days in Thailand, which is great, but it comes with certain conditions. You cannot leave the country and come back. To do this you will need to apply for a multiple entry tourist visa (see below). If you travel somewhere else before the visa expires, you will lose the rest of the days allowed and, of course, the corresponding fee you paid for them. The SETV visa also needs to be used within three months of being issued, so there's no point in applying yonks in advance.

Tourist visa for multiple entries - 6 months!

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (4)

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist if you really want to explore every corner of the Land of Smiles? How about a full six months? Yes, a huge half year of vacation on the sands of Koh Lanta, splashing in the sparkling seaSamui, pick up Chang in central Bangkok and walk in the hills around Kanchanaburi. Sounds fantastic, huh?

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Unfortunately, like most things for a Thai visa, it's not that simple. OTourist visa for multiple entries(METV) may also be known as a 6-month visa, but it is not actually six months of continuous entry. Instead, you should think of it more as a pass to get as many 60-day visas as you want within six months.

Well, let's say you go to Thailand just in time for the end of the rainy seasonKoh Phi Phiin roomsvsince November. You can stay for 60 days from your landing date, but you will have to fly out again. The good thing is that you can return immediately, the same day if you want, back to Phi Phi beaches, but also to any other international port (land, sea or air). Once you do, you'll get another stamp in 60 days, no questions asked.

The procedure for obtaining a METV is very similar to the procedure for obtaining a SETV (see above). You will need to attend an interview at a Thai consulate outside the country, bring all the necessary documents and pay a fee – it is $175 for this longer stay option. Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of a multiple-entry visa is that it is valid from the moment it is issued, so your six-month entry stamps get shorter and shorter by the time you leave the Thai consulate.

Extending my visa in Thailand

It is possible to extend the visa for almost all types of Thai visas. However, it is not without complications. You must appear in person at the immigration office before the visa's expiration date, bring photos, identification, and, in most cases, answer a few trivia questions about why you want to extend. Plus, there's a fee, and it's not cheap – visa waiver extensions, for example, cost up to THB 1,900 ($56). That's even longer than a 60-day visa!

Extend my visa in Thailand

Overstaying any type of visa is considered a serious offense in Thailand. However, that doesn't stop it from happening and we always hear stories of people facing immigration when they fly out of the country and the dates don't match.

The general rule is that you will be fined 500 THB ($15 USD) per day for each day of your stay up to a maximum of 20,000 THB ($600 USD). After that, you can be deported from the country and banned from re-entry for several years. It also doesn't look good in your passport and could affect your ability to apply for a visa in other countries around the world. Damned!

(Video) How long can you stay in Thailand on a tourist visa?

Our advice? Don't even think about it!

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? quick conclusion

How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas (5)

There is no easy answer here. The length of possible stays in this sunny country in the heart of Southeast Asia can vary from just a few hours during a flight to several years for those visiting as expats and professionals.

Different visas suit different types of travelers better, so it's always worth doing a little research on the documentation that's best for you before you head to the sparkling beaches of Phuket or the jungle-covered hills of Chiang Mai.

However, please note that not all travelers to all destinations will be eligible for all types of visas. Indeed, there may be some hurdles to overcome and requirements to meet, especially if you want to enter Thailand for a long time.

As a general rule, how long you can stay in Thailand as a tourist ranges from up to 30 days without a visa to around six months on a METV, although this requires you to leave the country and return to the country at least every 60 days.


How long can you stay in Thailand as a tourist? Guide to visas? ›

The tourist visa must generally be used within 90 days from the date of issue and allows an initial stay of 60 days. After arrival in Thailand, a tourist visa may be extended at the discretion of an immigration officer once for an additional 30 days with the total period of stay no longer than 90 days.

Can I stay in Thailand for 90 days on a tourist visa? ›

Eligible applicants will have to pay a visa fee of 2,000 baht and the visa holder will be allowed to stay in the country for 90 days. After this period expires, immigration officers will be able to renew the holder's visa twice, each for another 90 days at a time.

How many times can I extend my 30 day tourist visa in Thailand? ›

The 30 Day Tourist Visa Extension

This type of visa can only be extended once and allows you to remain in Thailand for up to 75 days (45 days initial stay + 30 days extended stay). After March 2023, it will go back to 60 days in total.

How many times a year can you get a tourist visa for Thailand? ›

There is a 60-day Tourist Visa that can be extended for additional 30 days, and the 90-day Special Tourist Visa (STV), which allows two 90-day visa extensions at the local immigration office. There are certain requirements needed for the STV, but it allows a visitor to stay in Thailand for up to 9 months.

How long can US citizens stay in Thailand? ›

The 45-day visa exemption rule and 30-day Visas on Arrival are already in place until at least March 31, 2023, with plans to extend them to the end of the year.


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