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From today, July 1, there is no more Thailand Pass. The digital online pre-travel registration for people coming into Thailand has had a checkered history and left a bad taste in the north of many foreigners, and Thais, who have had a poor expense with the digital gateway. After the launch of the Phuket Sandbox on July 1, 2021 – a program to allow fully vaccinated people to arrive on the island of Phuket – Thailand was a leader in Asia during the tentative re-opening phases of the second half of last year. But the late onset of the Omicron […]

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I won't mourn the passing of Thailand Pass, I'll happily do a little jig on its grave. 

Honestly, it wasn't the Pass so much as the mandatory insurance which, by every metric that I can see, was nothing more than a way for the Thai government to bail out incompetent insurance companies in the kingdom. If there is one thing that I truly hate, it is a business where the profits are privatized and the losses socialized and that was what the Thailand Pass was.

However...

"After the experience of the Thailand Pass, including the many failures of the system along the way, there is now an opportunity for the Thai government to move from its largely paper-based immigration processes to digital platforms. That, at this stage, is yet to show any early signs of implementation.

But imagine uploading your flight details and passport info into a “Thailand Entry App” and just walking off the plane, scanning your QR code and walking into the country. THAT would be a useful future for a revised Thailand Pass-style digital gateway."

Is seeing Thai Immigration going fully digital something that members want? I have been in the kingdom off and on for several decades, and can recall (at least!) annual data breaches by the Thai government, if not more often. There was the guy updating the Immigration database who decided that he didn't need a password for it while he worked, and it leaked. There was the form created by some high-up in the Immigration police where we had to give all sorts of personal data to get a renewal; where is that data now? Anyone? Seriously, anyone know? I recall seeing un-guarded computers where it was all stored. Those are two examples that come to mind off the top of my head, and I know that there are many, many, many more.

Call me a 'Luddite', but I want a piece of paper, duly stamped waaaaaaaay too many times, to accompany any/all visas/extensions in my passport. 

A wise man once said "just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they aren't after you."

 

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Getting rid of Thai pass and officially letting bars open until 2am is a symbolic step in the right direction, having just got back from Thailand the impression I got was that it's still at least 12 months off being normal. Tourism is clearly lower than before although there are a lot of Indians there and that will help bridge the gap. Inflation is sky high in the west and you have to now fly with a middle eastern airline like Saudia to get a good deal on a long distance flight, I went with Thai Airways and paid £250 more than I did on a return ticket in 2019 so it's going to be a gradual rebuilding.  

The rules that are kept for now are pointless. Bars open until 6am in Phuket and Pattaya, forced to close at midnight in Bangkok (although some ignore). Must wear a mask in 7 eleven and shopping malls but not in bars that serve food and nobody wears a mask after sunset. Legacy social distancing signs from 2020 that aren't important now left up. In an elevator an East Asian woman turned to face the wall away from me because that's what the sticker on the floor said to do. Unvaccinated still required to take an ATK test before departing because of the nonsense implication that you're more likely to carry the virus than a vaccinated person.

So Thailand is on the right track but it's going to take awhile for sanity to return, empty business units to be filled and the global economy to settle down.  

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Posted (edited)

Good article, I agree with its content. However, I don't agree with the prospect of having a "Thailand App" to do away with the TM6 immigration procedure permanently in the name of progress. 

Call me old fashioned, but that system facilitated the pre covid,  arrival of multi millions of annual tourists. It wasn't broken and it doesn't need fixing!

I for one, want nothing to do with any electronic entry system after the crap experience of the Thailand Pass. The digital experience of Thailand is not a happy one.

Just look at the Banking apps today for example, pay day and not working!

Edited by BIGGLES
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7 minutes ago, BIGGLES said:

I don't agree with the prospect of having a "Thailand App" to do away with the TM6 immigration procedure permanently in the name of progress

Given Thailand's challenges with the deployment of technology I'm more than happy to stick with paper for the time being. Not to mention the downstream dependencies for TM30 and TM47.

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Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, Cabra said:

Given Thailand's challenges with the deployment of technology I'm more than happy to stick with paper for the time being. Not to mention the downstream dependencies for TM30 and TM47.

I would be quite happy to give electronic TM6 a go. I had no problem with TP and successfully use the apps for TM30 and 47. The paper TM6 is fine unless you lose it ( it happened to me once). Anyway I thought they had announced the temporary cancellation of TM6. What happened with that?

Edited by Stevejm
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2 hours ago, Shade_Wilder said:

I won't mourn the passing of Thailand Pass, I'll happily do a little jig on its grave. 

Honestly, it wasn't the Pass so much as the mandatory insurance which, by every metric that I can see, was nothing more than a way for the Thai government to bail out incompetent insurance companies in the kingdom. If there is one thing that I truly hate, it is a business where the profits are privatized and the losses socialized and that was what the Thailand Pass was.

However...

"After the experience of the Thailand Pass, including the many failures of the system along the way, there is now an opportunity for the Thai government to move from its largely paper-based immigration processes to digital platforms. That, at this stage, is yet to show any early signs of implementation.

But imagine uploading your flight details and passport info into a “Thailand Entry App” and just walking off the plane, scanning your QR code and walking into the country. THAT would be a useful future for a revised Thailand Pass-style digital gateway."

Is seeing Thai Immigration going fully digital something that members want? I have been in the kingdom off and on for several decades, and can recall (at least!) annual data breaches by the Thai government, if not more often. There was the guy updating the Immigration database who decided that he didn't need a password for it while he worked, and it leaked. There was the form created by some high-up in the Immigration police where we had to give all sorts of personal data to get a renewal; where is that data now? Anyone? Seriously, anyone know? I recall seeing un-guarded computers where it was all stored. Those are two examples that come to mind off the top of my head, and I know that there are many, many, many more.

Call me a 'Luddite', but I want a piece of paper, duly stamped waaaaaaaay too many times, to accompany any/all visas/extensions in my passport. 

A wise man once said "just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they aren't after you."

No mourning, indeed.  👍

Ref to Immigration, I'll be pleased to see the grumpy dinosaurs- in-charge, clinging to their comfortable old shoes, retire out and make way for the next generation coming up through the ranks, who will then face less resistance in carrying the ball down pitch into the 21st Century, using COTS tech to streamline systems and procedures for us directly, and indirectly by improving processes for their end-user Immigration staff;  who, let's be honest, many among the 20-40 year old range, have long rolled their eyes and bemoan the archaic system and procedures they have to deal with.

For 10+ years here, a pittance compared to many others, I've been quietly amused by the stark contrast between the paper-intensive process the I/O deal with for my annual extensions and of stay, juxtaposed to what they and their colleagues get up to in the interim moments.  

I sat there watching the painful extension based on marriage to a Thai process play out the first few years here (before shifting to Retirement Extension), amused by the spectacle of idle Immigration Staff fiddling with their phones, trading messages, photos and document attachments with friends/family/others instantly, perhaps casually transferring money to pay for orders on Lazada, with door to door delivery in 2-days, all at the touch of a few buttons.  

I was enthusiastic the first time I showed up for a 90-day Report and learned the old paper form had been discontinued.  Wonderful!  And then feeling deflated and slightly annoyed when the processing clerk didn't ask me the single, most salient question underlying the whole intent of the 90-day requirement - if I still resided at the same address.  Not a word, which begs the obvious question. 

There have been other, minor improvements along the way, some stuck, some didn't, some capitalized on tech but sadly, merely wound up being an extra step in the I/O's process without a corresponding reduction in paperwork. 

The Thai Dinosaurs were forced to adapt, to varying degrees, during COVID.  Keeping expectations low to avoid disappointment but cautiously optimistic as we tumble along, two steps forward, 1 back, in fits and starts, but we'll get there, eventually.

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Posted (edited)
12 minutes ago, TWS60 said:

And then feeling deflated and slightly annoyed when the processing clerk didn't ask me the single, most salient question underlying the whole intent of the 90-day requirement - if I still resided at the same address.  Not a word, which begs the obvious question. 

Your address is on the form! When was the paper form discontinued? I used one in March then used the app in June.

Edited by Stevejm
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50 minutes ago, Stevejm said:

I would be quite happy to give electronic TM6 a go. I had no problem with TP and successfully use the apps for TM30 and 47. The paper TM6 is fine unless you lose it ( it happened to me once). Anyway I thought they had announced the temporary cancellation of TM6. What happened with that?

I had not heard any confirmation. I'm flying out in a couple weeks. I guess I'll find out when I return. 

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6 hours ago, Thaiger said:

Thailand has had a checkered history and left a bad taste in the north

Ah the grim north. 😛

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Odds on, it will be back in August, new variant causing western meeja panic already....

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5 hours ago, Shade_Wilder said:

I won't mourn the passing of Thailand Pass, I'll happily do a little jig on its grave. 

Honestly, it wasn't the Pass so much as the mandatory insurance which, by every metric that I can see, was nothing more than a way for the Thai government to bail out incompetent insurance companies in the kingdom. If there is one thing that I truly hate, it is a business where the profits are privatized and the losses socialized and that was what the Thailand Pass was.

However...

"After the experience of the Thailand Pass, including the many failures of the system along the way, there is now an opportunity for the Thai government to move from its largely paper-based immigration processes to digital platforms. That, at this stage, is yet to show any early signs of implementation.

But imagine uploading your flight details and passport info into a “Thailand Entry App” and just walking off the plane, scanning your QR code and walking into the country. THAT would be a useful future for a revised Thailand Pass-style digital gateway."

Is seeing Thai Immigration going fully digital something that members want? I have been in the kingdom off and on for several decades, and can recall (at least!) annual data breaches by the Thai government, if not more often. There was the guy updating the Immigration database who decided that he didn't need a password for it while he worked, and it leaked. There was the form created by some high-up in the Immigration police where we had to give all sorts of personal data to get a renewal; where is that data now? Anyone? Seriously, anyone know? I recall seeing un-guarded computers where it was all stored. Those are two examples that come to mind off the top of my head, and I know that there are many, many, many more.

Call me a 'Luddite', but I want a piece of paper, duly stamped waaaaaaaay too many times, to accompany any/all visas/extensions in my passport. 

A wise man once said "just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they aren't after you."

555 the data form was quickly scrapped, it wasn't compulsory, or even gazetted, just some brownjob wanting to kiss upwards.

By the way, the much lauded "Big Joke" is not a Farang friendly type.

He introduced the minimum funds required to be held in a Thai bank forever B400,000 many poorer expats were driven out, to the glee of some entitled white fat cats on various forums. Their turn will come, I don't believe in karma -but the bureaucratic state is a bitch! 

As for the "safety" of paper. At one point in CM they were printing extension of stay etc on the back of used paper, one time I carried a copy of the bio data of some random French guys passport on the back  my 90 day extension around for a few months. 

TiT.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Cabra said:

I had not heard any confirmation. I'm flying out in a couple weeks. I guess I'll find out when I return. 

After a bit of searching around I found that the TM6 hasn’t been scrapped just a new form introduced. Example of new form on Thai language website as follows:

 

https://www.posttoday.com/social/general/508063

English news story as below:

https://coconuts.co/bangkok/news/no-thailand-hasnt-scrapped-immigration-cards-will-introduce-new-ones/

Edited by Stevejm
Updated
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1 hour ago, Venusianhart said:

As for the "safety" of paper. At one point in CM they were printing extension of stay etc on the back of used paper, one time I carried a copy of the bio data of some random French guys passport on the back  my 90 day extension around for a few months. 

I wondered what happened to all the paper I have presented year in year out, had vision of massive warehouses full of this garbage but now realize they are recycling thanks to your post.

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5 hours ago, BIGGLES said:

I for one, want nothing to do with any electronic entry system after the crap experience of the Thailand Pass. The digital experience of Thailand is not a happy one.

Agreed, especially because nothing ever connects.  I am generally opposed to these things as i hate government tracking but it amazes me how you need to fill out the same information on 30 different forms just so each one can be stored in a filing cabinet somewhere.  The amount of redundancy is mindboggling.   

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2 minutes ago, MrNovax said:

Agreed, especially because nothing ever connects.  I am generally opposed to these things as i hate government tracking but it amazes me how you need to fill out the same information on 30 different forms just so each one can be stored in a filing cabinet somewhere.  The amount of redundancy is mindboggling.   

I don’t know. I did TM30 and 90 day report via the app without any issues so I am happy with it so far.

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Veering way off-topic, guys, with TM6 and 90 day report comments.
Topic is about the TP.

Existing topic about the TM6 here: TM6 hasn’t Been Canceled - Pandemic-related Rules for Entry: Thailand Pass, Insurance, SHA+, ASQ - Thaiger Talk (thethaiger.com)

 

Existing topics on 90 day reporting here;  > Work Permits, TM30 Reporting, TM47 - 90 day Reports - Thaiger Talk (thethaiger.com)

Moderator.

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On 7/1/2022 at 9:51 AM, BIGGLES said:

Good article, I agree with its content. However, I don't agree with the prospect of having a "Thailand App" to do away with the TM6 immigration procedure permanently in the name of progress. 

Call me old fashioned, but that system facilitated the pre covid,  arrival of multi millions of annual tourists. It wasn't broken and it doesn't need fixing!

I for one, want nothing to do with any electronic entry system after the crap experience of the Thailand Pass. The digital experience of Thailand is not a happy one.

Just look at the Banking apps today for example, pay day and not working!

Agree 100% '... imagine scanning your QR code and walking into the country...' Fine in theory, until an inevitable Internet outage causes chaos. An app based system also requires every passenger to own a smartphone. This shouldn't be a pre-requisite for international travel. The author of this article might be surprised to hear that there may actually still be some people on this planet who don't know what a QR code is. As someone has already mentioned there's also security issues with the electronic storage of such vast amounts of personal data. Personally I've never had a problem with completing the pre-arrival form on the plane before landing in Thailand. Like you say in the year before Covid hit nearly  40 million tourists visited the country using the TM6. This might suggest that the system actually worked! No doubt some may think I'm a luddite or dinasour. Far from it. I'm not opposed to digital technology. I just believe that there's a risk of us becoming  too dependant on it. 

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36 minutes ago, Lighthouseman said:

Agree 100% '... imagine scanning your QR code and walking into the country...' Fine in theory, until an inevitable Internet outage causes chaos. An app based system also requires every passenger to own a smartphone. This shouldn't be a pre-requisite for international travel. The author of this article might be surprised to hear that there may actually still be some people on this planet who don't know what a QR code is. As someone has already mentioned there's also security issues with the electronic storage of such vast amounts of personal data. Personally I've never had a problem with completing the pre-arrival form on the plane before landing in Thailand. Like you say in the year before Covid hit nearly  40 million tourists visited the country using the TM6. This might suggest that the system actually worked! No doubt some may think I'm a luddite or dinasour. Far from it. I'm not opposed to digital technology. I just believe that there's a risk of us becoming  too dependant on it. 

Here’s a thought. Why not keep the paper TM6 as backup or for people who don’t have access to tech? During the TP era didn’t all applications have to be made on line although a printed out qr code could be used on arrival? I understand that all visa applications for Thailand in UK are made on line now so you at least need access to a computer. I wonder what other countries are doing regarding tech implementation for immigration and visas. I don’t know because I haven’t looked recently.

https://london.thaiembassy.org/en/publicservice/how-to-apply-for-thailand-s-e-visa-stickerless?page=5d6636cd15e39c3bd00072dd&menu=5f4b6eb3f6ae4b236972c562

FBA92EEC-9E21-4B9D-A5FA-0956208F4139.jpeg

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7 hours ago, Lighthouseman said:

Agree 100% '... imagine scanning your QR code and walking into the country...' Fine in theory, until an inevitable Internet outage causes chaos. An app based system also requires every passenger to own a smartphone. This shouldn't be a pre-requisite for international travel. The author of this article might be surprised to hear that there may actually still be some people on this planet who don't know what a QR code is. As someone has already mentioned there's also security issues with the electronic storage of such vast amounts of personal data. Personally I've never had a problem with completing the pre-arrival form on the plane before landing in Thailand. Like you say in the year before Covid hit nearly  40 million tourists visited the country using the TM6. This might suggest that the system actually worked! No doubt some may think I'm a luddite or dinasour. Far from it. I'm not opposed to digital technology. I just believe that there's a risk of us becoming  too dependant on it. 

Couple of months ago,My neighbor learned about the Qr code the hard way ! Got to Heathrow  and was asked for it, and didn’t have one. Lost over 950 pound  sterling and had to start over because he trusted his Thai Gf to know everything about the rules to enter Thailand  .

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6 hours ago, Stevejm said:

I understand that all visa applications for Thailand in UK are made on line now so you at least need access to a computer. I wonder what other countries are doing regarding tech implementation for immigration and visas.

In Germany, just when Thailand opened the borders 1st Nov 21, they discontinued physical visa applications, but the e-visa system wasn't ready until late Nov. - T.i.T.

Shortened my trip to a visa-free 30 days.

 

And yes, no chance without internet these days, why not keep both avenues open?

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16 hours ago, riclag said:

Couple of months ago,My neighbor learned about the Qr code the hard way ! Got to Heathrow  and was asked for it, and didn’t have one. Lost over 950 pound  sterling and had to start over because he trusted his Thai Gf to know everything about the rules to enter Thailand  .

That’s pretty odd. Did he apply for TP? If so the approval email clearly states that you need to present an electronic or printed copy at check in!

D8E687E0-BAE4-4220-BF09-536E65A4D866.jpeg

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On 7/1/2022 at 3:12 PM, Tigermask said:

Getting rid of Thai pass and officially letting bars open until 2am is a symbolic step in the right direction, having just got back from Thailand the impression I got was that it's still at least 12 months off being normal. Tourism is clearly lower than before although there are a lot of Indians there and that will help bridge the gap. Inflation is sky high in the west and you have to now fly with a middle eastern airline like Saudia to get a good deal on a long distance flight, I went with Thai Airways and paid £250 more than I did on a return ticket in 2019 so it's going to be a gradual rebuilding.  

The rules that are kept for now are pointless. Bars open until 6am in Phuket and Pattaya, forced to close at midnight in Bangkok (although some ignore). Must wear a mask in 7 eleven and shopping malls but not in bars that serve food and nobody wears a mask after sunset. Legacy social distancing signs from 2020 that aren't important now left up. In an elevator an East Asian woman turned to face the wall away from me because that's what the sticker on the floor said to do. Unvaccinated still required to take an ATK test before departing because of the nonsense implication that you're more likely to carry the virus than a vaccinated person.

So Thailand is on the right track but it's going to take awhile for sanity to return, empty business units to be filled and the global economy to settle down.  

Don’t forget the horrible exchange rate for people traveling from UK (back  in 2007 it was £1=70 Baht and now around 40Baht which has a huge impact)! I think the world as a whole has got a long way to go before things return to pre pandemic normal as far as travel and tourism go and not just as a result of Covid measures. Flight prices are heavily affected by oil prices and who knows where they will go with the ongoing volatility related to the Ukraine War and other factors?

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3 hours ago, Stevejm said:

That’s pretty odd. Did he apply for TP? If so the approval email clearly states that you need to present an electronic or printed copy at check in!

D8E687E0-BAE4-4220-BF09-536E65A4D866.jpeg

No ,he  and she never did , cause they neglected to look into “all the covid  requirements “. 

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1 hour ago, riclag said:

No ,he  and she never did , cause they neglected to look into “all the covid  requirements “. 

Oops. Nothing to do with tech then. If I was spending a grand on a ticket. I would look into the entry requirements for any country even before Covid but especially during the pandemic..

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