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How to Renew Your Visa in Thailand

Learn the process of making the duration of your stay longer in Thailand.

Reasons why you should renew your visa?

There are several reasons why you should renew your visa. But for sure these are the two main reasons. Firstly, you don’t want to end up with a fee for overstaying your visa. Secondly, there’s the fact that you don’t want to be hunted by police immigration officers. That’s when you know you need to renew your Thai visa or extend your visa-free entry.

After your entry stamp expires, you can prolong your stay in Thailand with a Thai visa renewal. The length is determined by how you entered the country and the type of tourist visa you were given.

Key Points:

  • You can prolong your stay in the country at the local immigration office or through visa extensions
  • Plan to have your visa renewal done ahead of time
  • There are 2 choices for the length of stay for visa renewals: a 30-day and a 7 day extension

The most common visa renewal application process

Request a TM.7 form from the Information desk when you arrive at the Immigration Office and fill it out. Present photocopies of the above-mentioned requirements, and make sure that each copy shows your signature, as they will almost certainly ask you to sign for it.

After you’ve completed all of the required documents, the officer at the information desk will assign you a queue number, and all you have to do now is wait for your number to be called. Once it’s your queue, you must go to the centre desk to get your photo taken and then you will have to pay the processing fee. You’ll then have to return to the waiting area and wait for your name to be called out once more.

The immigration officer will return a receipt of payment, any change, and your passport with an extension stamp when you are called for the second time. Before you leave, double-check that you have been granted an extension of 30 days or more, depending on the type of visa you are renewing.

The second most common visa renewal application process

The number of times visa renewals and extensions available at immigration offices are limited. However, there is another way to prolong your stay and that is leaving the country and then coming back in. A foreigner must either leave the country and return to reactivate the remaining validity period on their existing visa or obtain a new visa from a consulate or embassy in another country.

Having a ticket from a border run company and boarding a minivan early in the morning is a typical border run. After that, you’d travel to the nearest border and leave Thailand and it usually takes a 3-4 hour trip there and back.

When you arrive in the destination country, you turn around and return to Thailand, earning a re-entry stamp along the way.

You might want to bring extra money as it may be difficult to find an ATM that accepts foreign cards in some of the smaller border towns. You never know when something might go wrong and you will need to pay for taxi rides, motorcycle rides, or book a one-night hotel room.

It’s best not to be in a rush to renew your visa; instead, plan ahead of time.

What are the documents required for the visa renewals?

You must send the following documents when applying for a visa renewal in Thailand.

1. Application Form – This form can be TM7 or usually known as Extension of Temporary stay in the Kingdom. The other form you will be needing is the TM8 form that is used to apply for a re-entry permit. This TM8 application form is required if you have a 12-month extended retirement visa, a 12-month extended marriage visa, or a valid Thai work permit. These are available at the immigration office.

2. Passport – Not only the original passport, but also copies of specific passport pages such as the bio page, passport page with visa, passport page with the last entry stamp, and a copy of the departure card are required when applying. Do not be concerned about where you will get your photocopies because there is always a photocopier shop available at every immigration office; however, each copy will cost an additional baht.

3. Photo – The minimum picture size for applying for a Thailand visa extension is 4 x 6 cm and should be no more than six months old. However, they are not too strict with this requirement.

4. Visa Extension Fee – The fee for extending a visa in Thailand is 1,900 baht. The processing fee for 30-day and 7-day extensions is the same. The fee for extending a visa must be paid in cash, and the only local currency is accepted.

Visa renewals are as simple as requesting a TM.7 form and filling it out.

Tips to make renewing your visa a lot easier

Here is Tip 1: Length of stay for Thai visa renewal, when it comes to extending the duration of a Thai tourist visa you have two options. A 30-day extension or a 7-day extension. Your stay can be extended by another 30 days if you have a 60-day entry stamp from a Single-Entry Tourist Visa/Multiple Entry Visa or a 30-day entry stamp from visa exemptions.

If you have a passport from one of the following countries: India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iran, Nepal, Togo, Nigeria, or Uganda your stay can be extended by 7 days only if you have a 15-day entry stamp.

Tip 2: Best time to apply for visa renewal

First and foremost, you must keep in mind that you must apply for your visa renewal before your stay permit or visa expires.

It is preferable not to wait until the last minute to renew your permit of stay and it’s also a good idea to do it ahead of time to prevent the hassle of preparing needed documents and waiting in long lines.

If you’re worried about the date of your new visa, keep in mind that the days are added to the current stamp, not the date that you applied for an extension.