Retirement Visa


If you are an American citizen and plan on staying in Thailand longer than 30 days, you will need a Thailand travel visa. There are several different visas available and it’s important to choose the right one.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need

  • Passport valid for at least 6 months
  • Visa application
  • Two passport pictures
  • Application fee
  • Self-addressed stamped envelope
  • Copy of travel documents



Step One

Determine if you need to obtain a visa. Staying in Thailand for less than 30 days does not require a visa if you are from the United States. In this case, you will only need a valid passport and travel documents that indicate your itinerary.


Step Two

Pick the type of visa you need to get. Students, tourists and workers require different visas. Pay attention to how long each visa is valid.


Step Three

Apply for the permit at the Thailand Embassy in Washington D.C. If you can’t travel to Washington D.C., you can download the appropriate forms and send them through the mail. Make sure you include a self-addressed stamped envelope to have your visa sent back to you.


Step Four

Supply your passport, photographs, completed application, application fee and your travel itinerary. You must have your exit from Thailand planned to obtain a visa.


Step Five

Wait for approval from Thai immigration officials. Most visas are approved, but denial is subject to the discretion of the Thai authorities.


Step Six

Keep your visa with your travel documents when you travel. You must supply your tourist or non-immigrant visa at the border to get your passport stamped correctly and avoid any confusion if you are picked up by Thai authorities 30 days after your entry date.

Visa Requirements

Visa requirements in Thailand are currently a great conversation piece at all the local bars throughout the Expat community.  Since the September 2006 Coup, the Government has clamped down on all types of visas.  The good news if any, is that the requirements for a

“retirement” visa have remained pretty much in tact. 


Most Foreign persons arriving from Western nations enjoy a “visa on arrival” status.  There is nothing you have to do except show up.  This visa on arrival is the crux of most of the talk, due to the fact that many Expats have lived for many years on this 30 day visa.  The government has now imposed a “three time” limit so this is messing with many minds.  Until this change, many just went to the nearest border crossing, stamped out of Thailand, into the neighboring country, turned around, stamped out of the neighboring country and back into Thailand for another 30 days.  This has now ended after the third stamp.  HOWEVER, this law is based on the “visa on arrival” visa.  If you go to a bordering country that either has a Thai Embassy or Consulate, you can request a 60 day tourist Visa.  As this is a visa issued outside Thailand it doesn’t count on the three stamp rule.  The current cost is 1000 baht.  It normally takes the Embassy or Consulate a day to process, so you end up spending the night somewhere outside Thailand.  The typical crossings are Hat Yai in the South to Malaysia, Nong Khai in the NE, to Lao PDR, or flying to Singapore, Hong Kong, Cambodia or Penang.


The Government has also discontinued one year visas for Non-Immigrant Status with multi-entry stamp.  Currently if you are holding a non-immigrant visa and apply outside Thailand for another, you are only given a 90 day single entry visa. (cost is 2,000 baht) Therefore you end up going out every 90 days to apply for another non-immigrant visa.  This is normally done if you are holding a work permit or applying for one.  You MAY NOT get a work permit holding a tourist visa.


This whole visa issue is the new government trying to tighten the very lax visa structure in the past.  It’s not out of line with other countries and the persons complaining most are Expats that have become accustom to the easy status they enjoyed for so many years.  Times are a changing and Thailand is just coming up to speed.  Think about what your home country expects of a Thai National traveling there or trying to stay past THEIR visa!!


NOTE:  If you want a fast, cheap and easy visa run, try Ranong, 4 hours North of Phuket.  Take a boat to Kawthaung, Myanmar, and return in an hour or two.  For the best visa service and BEST FOOD in Ranong go to Saporn’s Hideaway:

They can also make hotel reservations for you.  Visit their site


Now, back to the Retirement visa:  Very easy to obtain with little hassle.  You basically have to prove to the Immigration officers that you can afford to be there and will not be a burden on the Thai Government.  The easiest way is to show them a Thai bank account with 800,000 baht (about 20,000 US dollars).  This money should have been deposited for a couple months prior to your application.  After you get your visa, you can immediately withdraw the money. Every year you will have to renew, showing the 800,000 for the next year.  They are basing this on 65,000 baht per month of income.  You can even show a combination of income and bank account.  In other words if you have a pension coming in of say 1,500 dollars (54,000 baht) and a bank account with the difference (65,000 – 54,000 = 11,000 X 12 months =132,000 baht) you’ll be approved.  Or any combination thereof.  This is the best deal going. The only drawback is the fact that you are not “supposed” to work.  But you’re retired anyway, right!!  Just remember, this is Thailand and as any person living here will tell you, anything is possible.

Looking for an ever lasting happiness retirement in Thailand? Well, you come to the right country.

All you need to do is just relax, stay happiness, and get a Type “O” Non Immigrant Visa!

Eligibility Requirements for a Retirement Visa (O)

  • Foreign retired persons whose age is over 50 years old and bring in foreign currencies into Thailand for more than 800,000 baht (approximately US$ 20,000) can apply for non-immigrant visas for the period of one year stay in Thailand (renewal is guaranteed every year)

Qualification for Retirement Visa Applicants

  • A foreign national whose age is 50 years or above. Not being prohibited from entering the Kingdom under the Immigration Act B.E. 2522 (A.D 1979). Having in possession of money amounting not less than 800,000 Baht (approximately US$ 20,000) OR monthly income of 65,000 Baht (approximately US$ 1,600) OR saving and annual income totalling not less than 800,000 Baht (approximately US$ 20,000)
    The said amount must eventually be transferred to any bank in Thailand

Documents Required for Retirement Visa Application

  • A copy of visa application form completely filled out
  • Two passport-sized photos of the applicant taken within the past six months
  • Photocopy of the applicant’s travel document with validity not less than 18 months
  • Financial documents (copy) as previously stated in Qualification for Reqtirement Visa Applicants above

Procedure for a Retirement Visa offers a completed service in applying a Retirement Visa (Type O) for you. We prepare all documents and work with you to apply for a Retirement Visa. Contact us now or request for a quotation

  • Once the application form together with required documents submitted, the Consular officials are required to examine such documents to see that they are in good order and completed as stated, then they must be mailed through the pouch to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bangkok
  • The Consular mission will be notified to issue visa to the individual applicant when the Office of the Immigration Bureau has given approval
  • The Consular official must request for financial certifications that the applicant has already complied with financial obligations previously stated before granting the visa
  • Applicants to whom the agencies or organizations approved by the Office of the Immigration Bureau (i.e. have applied for visa on their behalf. The above mentioned applicants must have qualifications stated above

Duration of Stay on Retirement Visa

  • Permission to stay in the Kingdom will be granted for one year upon arrival in the Kingdom
  • Upon expiry date of such period, extension for one year at a time will be granted to this group of people as long as they meet the requirements as earlier stated.

Contact us now or request for a quotation

Our Service Fees:

Item Description Fees (Baht)
One Year Visa One Year Non-Imm B (Business Visa) 6,400
Type (O) Investment, Retirement, or Marriage 7,100
Dependant Visa for Dependant per person 3,600
Visa Extension Extension for your Stay 1,500
Visa Renewal Renewal of your Visa 2,000

* Note: Price exculding Government Fees of 2,000 Baht

Contact us now or request for a quotation