Connect with us


New and improved Smart Visa to make life easier for digital nomads in Thailand



PHOTO: Flickr / Nenad Stojkovic

The government is considering proposals to reform the Smart Visa to make it easier for digital nomads to legally work from the Kingdom. According to a Pattaya Mail report, the Tourism Authority of Thailand says the Board of Investment and the government’s Covid-19 task force have already agreed on the detail of the proposal.

Digital nomads have fallen through the cracks of Thailand’s immigration and tax laws for years, mostly needing creative visa agents to find ways of applying for a visa to stay in the country. Some tinkering with the Smart Visa category allowed some additional flexibility for potential nomads but only in specific professions and requiring a high minimum monthly salary.

The Pattaya Mail reports that the current Smart Visa has had limited take-up, mainly limited to highly-paid employees in the tech industry. The significant cost, involving a big cash investment or proof of a high salary, in addition to the usual complicated bureaucracy in obtaining the visa, has put most people off. The current proposal is to overhaul the visa, to allow digital nomads to remain in the Kingdom for up to 4 years, without a work permit.

Holders of the new, multiple-entry Smart Visa would also be exempt from 90 day reporting or having to obtain re-entry permits. According to the Pattaya Mail, their family members would also be entitled to accompany them, under the same flexible conditions. Foreign nationals in possession of tourist visas could transfer to the Smart Visa once they have proof of at least 6 months’ employment and evidence of qualifications and experience.

Watch our video about digital nomads in Thailand HERE.

A similar system is already in place in many other parts of the world, including a number of European countries, the Caribbean and Mexico. The Pattaya Mail quotes a spokesman from pressure group International Flexitravel, who says this is an opportunity for Thailand to lead Asia in legalising digital nomads. The arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic has transformed how and where people work and for many, there may never be a permanent return to the office.

“The legalisation of digital nomads has hardly begun in Asia. The current situation whereby nomads keep quiet and police hopefully ignore them is unsatisfactory. Thailand now has the opportunity to be a market leader because the latest technologies make the wholesale resumption of traditional office-based working less and less likely.”

SOURCE: The Pattaya Mail


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Video5 hours ago

Siam Paragon Bangkok International Fashion Week 2022

Thailand7 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Flash flooding to hit every region of Thailand

Thailand7 hours ago

Off-duty officer fires shots & fights with Bangkok cabbie

Sponsored15 hours ago

Starting a business and obtaining SMART Visa in Thailand is easy with Startup Booster

Thailand7 hours ago

Venomous snake emerges from parcel at sorting office in Thailand

Technology8 hours ago

Line Man Wongnai now Thailand’s largest tech startup

Thailand9 hours ago

Customer buys brand new Honda PCX motorbike with coins in eastern Thailand

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Drugs9 hours ago

Drug chase ends in flipped car, 6 million spilled Yaba pills

Thailand10 hours ago

169 Thai police officers dismissed for serious violations

World10 hours ago

Edward Snowden received Russian citizenship

Thailand10 hours ago

American told to stop riding go-kart in Chiang Mai

Thailand11 hours ago

Thailand legalises abortion up to 20 weeks

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

Nasal spray to prevent Covid hits stores October 1

Crime11 hours ago

China backs Philippines online gambling crackdown

Crime12 hours ago

Foreign gang allegedly extorts Russian couple of crypto worth US$50k in Thailand

Events13 hours ago

Meatfest will host meat cooking and eating contests in Pattaya

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11