Expats

  • Visa

    Government to raise 5-year Elite visa fee by 20%, as foreigners flee Covid countries

    As more foreigners opt for one of Thailand’s “elite” visas, allowing stays of between 5 and 20 years, and costing anything from 500,000 baht to 2 million, the most popular version is in for a price hike. The cost of the 5-year “Easy Access” visa will go up by 20% from January, to 600,000 baht. It’s understood there were a…

  • Tourism

    Finally! TAT partners with hotels, airlines, to offer travel stimulus package for expats

    The Tourism Authority of Thailand is partnering with airlines and over 300 hotels around the country in another domestic tourism stimulus scheme, this time aimed at expats. It’s understood all foreigners and their families, living in the Kingdom, are eligible to avail of the scheme. The “Expat Travel Bonus” offers a 1,000 baht per night discount on hotel accommodation at…

  • Thailand

    Ministry of Public Health advises public to keep eye on their health this winter

    The Thai Ministry of Public Health is advising the general public to keep an eye on their health in winter as familiar flu-like symptoms could be from Covid-19. Such concerns were also echoed by The Department of Disease Control as an increase in such common cold and flu cases could signal the possible spread of the novel coronavirus. It further…

  • Expats

    Expat says he was almost deported over Facebook posts

    With the ongoing pro-democracy protests, some have raised question: What could happen to foreigners who get involved or speak out against Thai politics? Or post their thoughts on social media? Well, they could possibly get deported. Expat Yan Marchal says he almost got kicked out of the country for posts he made on Facebook. Many of Yan’s recent Facebook posts…

  • Pattaya

    Pattaya – fighting to survive its Covid crisis

    Pattaya, like some of Thailand’s other former tourist hotspots, is facing some critical challenges. Hundreds of thousands of workers have left the city because there’s simply no work and up to 50% of the city’s shops are closed, some never to re-open. The Thaiger filmed most of this video on a long weekend at the end of October, the busiest…

  • Expats

    Thai hotels to offer 1,000 baht discounts for expats

    To stimulate domestic tourism and help revive the economy after the pandemic, hotels plan to offer expats a 1,000 baht discount on rooms until the end of the year. A debt moratorium, put in place to help businesses hurt by the pandemic, is ending this month and hotels need a boost. The Thai Hotels Association, or THA, says they will…

  • Coronavirus (Covid-19)

    Phuket in a Covid Crisis – VIDEO

    Phuket is facing an existential crisis. Because of its semi-isolation as an island, it doesn’t get much “passing traffic” and is too far away from Bangkok to attract much ‘weekend’ business. Whilst the borders stay closed the island’s businesses face ruin. A year ago, the streets of this tourist island were brimming with a diverse international tourism mix. In fact…

  • Expats

    Expat shift drives changes in Bangkok’s condo market

    Thailand’s dominant working expat nationality in past decades has been Japanese, currently making up 18% of expatriates in the country. But, while Japanese expatriate numbers are decreasing, a CBRE report notes that Chinese and Filipinos are on the rise. There were 28,560 Japanese expats in Thailand as of Q3 2020, just ahead of the Chinese expat contingent at 25,811. As China’s manufacturing has…

  • Business

    Singapore’s population contracts along with its GDP

    The little south east Asian island nation of Singapore, which has always punched way above its weight, with the fourth largest economy, but the biggest GDP per capita in the region, is getting smaller. Both its economy and population. The population of the Republic of Singapore is shrinking for the first time since 2003. Border closures and, mostly, job losses, are…

  • Thailand

    Some immigration offices set to open on Saturday, September 26, as visa amnesty looms

    With September 26 just a day away, Thailand’s Immigration offices have never been busier. Many expats and visitors, who have been either stranded in Thailand, or decided to wait out Thailand’s outbreak of Covid-19, need to get their visas sorted out, officially, by September 26. Whilst many foreigners have left things to the last minute, here’s the latest in the…

  • Expats

    Tourism officials look to end dual pricing for expats

    “The key factor is we have to treat expats like locals, without discrimination or a negative attitude towards foreigners.” Admission fees at national parks and tourist attractions are often drastically higher for expats than they are for Thai nationals. Foreigners sometimes even pay 10 times more than Thais. Tourism officials say they might put an end to dual pricing for…

  • Environment

    Expats arrested after posing for selfies while handling protected sea creatures

    A Dutch man and a Hungarian national are in custody after picking up protected sea creatures while diving off Koh Pha Ngan in the southern province of Surat Thani. Nation Thailand reports that the Hungarian man, named as Attila Ott, is a scuba diving instructor, who owns the Pink Panther Scuba Dive Club on the island. The Dutch man has…

  • Tourism

    Wow! TAT says they’ll give expats 500 baht to boost tourism

    Where would you go with 500 baht? Probably not very far. The Tourism Authority of Thailand says they’re going to hand out 500 baht discount for each trip they take. TAT says they hope that the 2 million baht budget scheme will help stimulate domestic tourism. The 500 baht is expected to encourage the expats to “travel in the country…

  • Tourism

    Expats to be offered travel deals at Bangkok event

    Ready to go on a holiday? Expats are being offered some travel deals to boost domestic tourism. The Tourism Authority of Thailand plans to hold an event next month for foreigners. “Expat Travel Deal 2020” is September 11-13 from 10am to 10pm at Quartier Gallery at Bangkok’s EmQuartier shopping centre. It’s free to attend. Travel agencies from all over the…

  • Tourism

    Expats should be able to share in the government’s tourism incentive programs

    by Expat Life Newly elected President of the Thailand Hotels Association and Vice President of Sukosol Hotels, Marisa Sukosol, was asked what her thoughts were about the Thailand Together government travel stimulus campaign. Although close to 5 million people have registered, only 600,000 hotel rooms have been booked at this stage, well below initial estimates. “The project would have more bookings if…

  • Politics

    Thai expats show their support for local pro-democracy protests

    The protests have been popping up around Thailand, and overseas. Support of the pro-democracy demands by students and activists has spread beyond the borders of Thailand. A group, calling themselves ‘Thais Rise Up” in Scotland says they are holding their own rally at the end of this week in Edinburgh with same demands – to call for the dissolution of the…

  • Tourism

    Thai minister encourages hotels to stop price-gouging expats

    The thorny issue of dual pricing has raised its ugly head again, this time with the current offerings for hotels as Thailand slowly winds up its tourism industry again. Tourism and Sports Ministry, Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, is asking hotels to offer “fair packages to expats and resident foreigners, and avoid price discrimination”. He said that there are 2 million foreign residents who…

  • Coronavirus (Covid-19)

    All foreigners will have to serve 14 day quarantine “in the foreseeable future” – Minister

    Thailand’s Minister of Tourism and Sports, Pipat Ratchakitprakan, is reassuring Thais by explaining that all foreigners, regardless of their status or origins, will have to serve a mandatory 14 day quarantine, at least “in the foreseeable future”. Thailand officials are currently prepares phase six of the re-opening of the country, loosening the restrictions imposed in April when the country closed…

  • Thailand

    Foreigners on short-term visas warned they must leave Thailand by September 26

    Don’t overstay your welcome… Thai Immigration officials are warning foreigners on short-term visas that they must make arrangements to leave the country before September 26. A visa amnesty in place as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic was recently extended until that date, but it looks like authorities want to make clear there will be no further extension, except in…

  • Coronavirus (Covid-19)

    Visa amnesty extension “very likely”. Decision this week.

    Only 11 days to go until we reach the end of the current visa amnesty, which has allowed people with expired visas to remain in the Kingdom during the midst of Thailand’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak. But even today Immigration officials say that a proposal to extend the visa amnesty, or some similar alternative, is before the government for…

  • Thailand

    Thailand growing more expensive for expats

    According to Employment Conditions Abroad, Bangkok and Chiang Mai are among the 30 most expensive cities for expats in Asia. The capital of Turkmenistan might not spring to mind when with considering the priciest cities, but according to ECA International it ranks first on both the global and Asian tables, a 5 point rise up the rankings due to an…

  • Coronavirus (Covid-19)

    Visa amnesty extension for foreigners “being considered”

    Thailand’s Immigration Bureau is considering extending the current visa amnesty for foreigners stranded in Thailand. The Foreign Ministry’s deputy spokesperson made the announcement at this morning’s daily Covid-19 briefing by the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration. The Cabinet’s last resolution was to grant an automatic visa extension for foreigners stranded here to stay until July 30. The deputy spokesperson asked…