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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good evening,I'm looking to make the move next year with my family to Thailand. What would the procedure be for us? How do we obtain long term stay?
 
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Good evening,I'm looking to make the move next year with my family to Thailand. What would the procedure be for us? How do we obtain long term stay?
Hi and welcome to ExpatForum....

It depends. Are you of retirement age (50 in Thailand)? Have a job waiting for you? Have family in Thailand? A major investor? If none of the above, it is quite difficult to get a long stay visa these days.

Let us know a little more about your personal circumstances, and we can try to advise you more....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thailand as our base.

Hello, my husband would be working in Australia & we are looking for Thailand to be our base. We are financially secure so we have the money to set ourselves up in Thailand. What is the best way for us? Thank you
 
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If your plan is to be Thailand resident, and your husband wants to work in Australia, flying in and out, you are going to struggle to get a long-stay visa. From the 'doingbusinessthailand' website:

Non-Immigrant Visa: for foreigner looking for prolonged stay, or coming to work or invest in Thailand, There are several categories of Non-Immigrant visas which include, among others, business visa category (B); dependent visa category (O); investment subject to the provisions of the laws on investment promotion category (BOI IB); diplomatic and consular visa category (D); performance of duties with the mass media category (M); performance of skilled or expert work category (EX); investment (with concurrence of ministries and departments concerned) and capital investment category (IM); and study or observation category (ED).
As far as I can see, you don't fall into any obvious category here. You are not working in Thailand, have no family links in Thailand, not studying, not investing massively. I presume you're not of retirement age (50, for the purposes of a retirement visa in Thailand). You haven't mentioned the possibility of enrolling for a full-time study course, or possessing the qualifications that would put you in line for a visa as an English teacher (TEFL, degree).

Thailand doesn't have an open door policy with respect to immigration, protects Thai jobs by various legislative means with respect to business visas, and is cracking down on long-stay 'tourists'.

How old is the family?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Looks like Thailand may not be

Hello Pete,My husband & i are 41 and we have 2 children 4 & 16. Son is due to start A levels in September 2010 and daughter also will be ready for full time education.Mmm well by the looks of things with what you have told me,we may have to look for another place as our base. The plan was that my husband would fly in and out,I'm not really keen on living in Australia. Thought Thailand would be a good spot!My husband has worked in and out of Asia for the last 12 years,unfortunately have always missed out on Thailand. Thank you for your help-very kind :)
 

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Hello, my husband would be working in Australia & we are looking for Thailand to be our base. We are financially secure so we have the money to set ourselves up in Thailand. What is the best way for us? Thank you
REECE,

Thailand is going to be very difficult for you and your family. Depending upon your finances other options are the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Bali [which is a part of Indonesia]

I've done a bit of research on the first two and you would have little or no trouble with either the Philippines or Malaysia. Malaysia has a MM2H visa where, by sticking money into a Malaysian bank [and keeping most of it there] you can become residents. It's called "Malaysia My 2nd Home" but you don't even need to do that. You can enter on a social visa, stay 90 days, then head to the border - Thailand or Singapore - and renew the visa. The other major advantages of Malaysia are the very good and very cheap food and you can buy/own properthy. Not so in the Philippines but still a pretty good place to live. I would recommend Davao City area in Mindanao - no hurricanes/typhoons and very safe area. Singapore and Bali are supposed to be a very good places to live as well. I think you can buy/own property in Singapore but probably not in Bali.

All have an easy commute to Australia but Malaysia and Singapore are easiest with both major international flights [Singapore Airlines / Malaysia Airlines] but some discount airlines that are even cheaper such as Air Asia. Probably the two best places in Malaysia are Penang and Kuala Lumpur. Penang has a very large expat contingent, not sure about Kuala Lumpur - but the shopping is very good and the ambience is outstanding! Good luck with your exciting new adventure. :)

Serendipity2
 

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Malaysia is slowly going to change into a muslim state.Be aware.

Cer,

Malaysia IS a Muslim country but that should not be a hindrance. They, like Turkey, are very moderate and although most of the population is Muslim [about 60%?] you will experience no difficulty. I've been to both countries and the people have been very nice and it's hard to know you're in an Islamic country except for the call to prayer. I hardly noticed in in either Istanbul or Kuala Lumpur but when I did I rather liked hearing the muezzins call to prayer.

If that still bothers you then forget Bali - even though Bali is Hindi it is still in a Muslim country. I think too much propaganda about the horrors of Islam are embedded in our western culture - we need to take the time to see who's behind that nonsense. You're also missing a great experience but each to his/her own.

That still leaves the Philippines [although Mindanao does have Muslim extremists they are kept far, far away from Davao City] I would also suggest Cagayan de Oro but you will see Muslims there as a matter of course. They've always been nice and I've never, ever felt uncomfortable. Finally there is Singapore which once was a part of Malaysia but is it's own independant city/state/country. Nice place to live and mostly ethnic Chinese.
 

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I have just been out to Thailand myself & would absolutely move out there .. but i done some research & it is very difficult .. like some comments have already said .. they are cutting back on the visit visa's .. multiple entries & not easy to get residence visa

You can apply for what they call .. a 1 year non resident visa through an agent but in most cases they only grant 90 days !!! then back on visa runs & no guarentee u will get back in to Thailand


Just google Thai Consulate its all on there
Also anyone else looking for info on Thailand ..
there is Sunbelt Asia & Siam Legal websites

Anyone find a legal way to stay there .. let me know !!
 

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I have just been out to Thailand myself & would absolutely move out there .. but i done some research & it is very difficult .. like some comments have already said .. they are cutting back on the visit visa's .. multiple entries & not easy to get residence visa

You can apply for what they call .. a 1 year non resident visa through an agent but in most cases they only grant 90 days !!! then back on visa runs & no guarentee u will get back in to Thailand


Just google Thai Consulate its all on there
Also anyone else looking for info on Thailand ..
there is Sunbelt Asia & Siam Legal websites

Anyone find a legal way to stay there .. let me know !!

desres,

You could get thrown in the slammer but I suppose that would defeat the purpose of your moving to Thailand wouldn't it! ;)

Sadly, Thailand is becoming less and less friendly to expats. This should be a wake-up call to those expats who own homes in Thailand as the 'pool' of those they can sell to is reduced if the expats are no longer safe buying - or even feel less safe. Those who CAN qualify for a 'resident' visa are not all that safe either. First you've got to put THB800,000 into a bank [about $24,000.00] which is to make sure they can 'export' you back to your home country should you become ill or persona non grata and what government can give they can also take away. The only country that can't deport you is the country of your birth - provided you're also a resident of that country. It's a brave new world out there!
 

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desres,

You could get thrown in the slammer but I suppose that would defeat the purpose of your moving to Thailand wouldn't it! ;)


Hiya ..... I did say Legal way in .. wouldnt want to mess with the Thai's :boxing:

I think its a beautiful place .. people so nice & so cheap there .. i couldnt believe it
 

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desres,

You could get thrown in the slammer but I suppose that would defeat the purpose of your moving to Thailand wouldn't it! ;)


Hiya ..... I did say Legal way in .. wouldnt want to mess with the Thai's :boxing:

I think its a beautiful place .. people so nice & so cheap there .. i couldnt believe it
desres,

I guess the other way you can legally get in is to get old - but I don't advise it. One's 'Golden Years' isn't all that it's cracked up to be. As ALGORE once opined, "What is up should be down and what is down should be up".
 

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Hi

I think you will find that Thailand re-introduced the 'Investment Visa' last November. This means that if you invest THB10M in property, you can be granted a Long Stay Visa. IF you are willing to purchase property (of course condo only),this avenue is open to you. As with normal Thai Law, if this is cacnelled in the futre, you retain your rights under general Grandfathering practices, if you maintain a continuous, unbroken Visa record.

With regard to Malaysia, yes, it is a Muslim State, and generally very tolerant and liberal, but some of the Malaysian States are very much NOT that way, KL is of course, very cosmopolitan.

In contradiction to S2 post, Indonesia, to my understanding is NOT a Muslim state (my wife is both Indonesian, and a Muslim). There are 5 offical religions, to which all citizens must subscribe (don't think that's the right word!) to. Bali could be a good alternative.
 

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Hi

I think you will find that Thailand re-introduced the 'Investment Visa' last November. This means that if you invest THB10M in property, you can be granted a Long Stay Visa. IF you are willing to purchase property (of course condo only),this avenue is open to you. As with normal Thai Law, if this is cacnelled in the futre, you retain your rights under general Grandfathering practices, if you maintain a continuous, unbroken Visa record.

With regard to Malaysia, yes, it is a Muslim State, and generally very tolerant and liberal, but some of the Malaysian States are very much NOT that way, KL is of course, very cosmopolitan.

In contradiction to S2 post, Indonesia, to my understanding is NOT a Muslim state (my wife is both Indonesian, and a Muslim). There are 5 offical religions, to which all citizens must subscribe (don't think that's the right word!) to. Bali could be a good alternative.

Winkie,

Sorry, and I don't mean to be disagreeable, but Indonesia IS a Muslim nation. There are over 200 million Muslims in Indonesia. I think it's the single largest Muslim population in the world.

There are other religions in Indonesia, to be sure, but Muslims comprise over 86% of the population. Its only about 60% Muslim in Malaysia. Bali, a part of Indonesia, is predominantly Hindi. I've never visited Indonesia but I plan to do so in the future - both the Muslim Indonesia and Hindi Bali. The latter is supposed to be very beautiful.

Serendipity2
 

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Hi S2

Sometimes is fun to disagree.

Below is a small part of the english translation of Undang Undang Dara Republik Indonesia (the Indoneisan Constitution).

The nation is based on belief in God, but the state guarantees religious freedom for all.

There is a huge difference between a Mulim State, and and Nation of predominatantly Muslim citizens.

Malaysia IS a Muslim State, all Bumi Putra are Muslim by law, and are not free to change religions.

Note the distinct difference in the Malaysian Consitution, which states that the Federal relegion is Islam, that all are free to practice any faith, and then excludes Muslims from that freedom.

Article 11
Though Islam is the religion of the Federation, Article 11 provides that every person has the right to profess and practice his own religion. Every person has the right to propagate his religion, but state law and, in respect of the Federal Territory, federal law may control or restrict the propagation of any religion, doctrine or belief among persons professing the Muslim religion. There is, however, freedom to carry on missionary work among non-Muslims.


Sharia Law is practiced to quite an extreme level in Malaysia, with floggings and whippings being the punishment for drinkning a beer, for example. Malaysia has for the last 2 years, even begun the process of fully adopting Sharia Law as its main Legal process.

Hope we can agree that Indonesia is a country of religious freedom, which has the largest Muslim population (88%). 29,000,000 are not Muslim, which is a larger population than the whole of Malaysia, where only 11,000,000 are not Muslim.

Finally, could I just add, that Hindi is a language spoken in Northen India. Bali is predominantly Hindu in religious belief.

Many parts of both Indonesia and Malaysia are very very beautiful, regardless of their religious leaning.
 

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Hi S2

Sometimes is fun to disagree.

Below is a small part of the english translation of Undang Undang Dara Republik Indonesia (the Indoneisan Constitution).

The nation is based on belief in God, but the state guarantees religious freedom for all.

There is a huge difference between a Mulim State, and and Nation of predominatantly Muslim citizens.

Malaysia IS a Muslim State, all Bumi Putra are Muslim by law, and are not free to change religions.

Note the distinct difference in the Malaysian Consitution, which states that the Federal relegion is Islam, that all are free to practice any faith, and then excludes Muslims from that freedom.

Article 11
Though Islam is the religion of the Federation, Article 11 provides that every person has the right to profess and practice his own religion. Every person has the right to propagate his religion, but state law and, in respect of the Federal Territory, federal law may control or restrict the propagation of any religion, doctrine or belief among persons professing the Muslim religion. There is, however, freedom to carry on missionary work among non-Muslims.


Sharia Law is practiced to quite an extreme level in Malaysia, with floggings and whippings being the punishment for drinkning a beer, for example. Malaysia has for the last 2 years, even begun the process of fully adopting Sharia Law as its main Legal process.

Hope we can agree that Indonesia is a country of religious freedom, which has the largest Muslim population (88%). 29,000,000 are not Muslim, which is a larger population than the whole of Malaysia, where only 11,000,000 are not Muslim.

Finally, could I just add, that Hindi is a language spoken in Northen India. Bali is predominantly Hindu in religious belief.

Many parts of both Indonesia and Malaysia are very very beautiful, regardless of their religious leaning.

Hi Winkie,

I guess we can split the difference?! If I'm in a country that's 60% Muslim I consider it a Muslim nation although frankly I don't give it too much thought. I think Indonesia is much like Turkey and the overwhelming number of people are not so different than we are in the west. If I didn't hear the call to prayer it wouldn't be much different than a eastern European country. I'm not especially religious so that's never been an obstacle in my travels.

I think you're correct regarding Bali being a Hindu [not Hindi] population. I thought Hindi was plural of Hindu - but probably not. At least I had the correct ethnicity - I hope! ;) Have not been to Indonesia but have seen many photos and I would agree that the country is beautiful.
 
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Winkie, another difference is the variety of Muslim belief. As I understand it, there are a large number of progressive, or 'modernist' followers of Islam in Indonesia, which is quite different to the traditionalist Middle Eastern form. And Shari'a law is only upheld in one province?
 

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Hi Frogblogger. Yes, it is evident that the type of Islam in Indonesia is generally very liberal, openminded and perfectly capable to living side-by-side with others of different or even conflicting religions.

Of course there is JI, and its bunch of fundamentalist followers (and other groups too), who certainly seem less capable of integration in a multi-religious society.

Anyway, we better get back on subject. This started as someone's request about how to live longterm in Thailand without either Work Permit or Retirement Visa.
 

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Cer,

Malaysia IS a Muslim country but that should not be a hindrance. They, like Turkey, are very moderate and although most of the population is Muslim [about 60%?] you will experience no difficulty. I've been to both countries and the people have been very nice and it's hard to know you're in an Islamic country except for the call to prayer. I hardly noticed in in either Istanbul or Kuala Lumpur but when I did I rather liked hearing the muezzins call to prayer.

If that still bothers you then forget Bali - even though Bali is Hindi it is still in a Muslim country. I think too much propaganda about the horrors of Islam are embedded in our western culture - we need to take the time to see who's behind that nonsense. You're also missing a great experience but each to his/her own.

That still leaves the Philippines [although Mindanao does have Muslim extremists they are kept far, far away from Davao City] I would also suggest Cagayan de Oro but you will see Muslims there as a matter of course. They've always been nice and I've never, ever felt uncomfortable. Finally there is Singapore which once was a part of Malaysia but is it's own independant city/state/country. Nice place to live and mostly ethnic Chinese.
I lived and worked for 6 years in Indonesia an was there when the riots were in 1998.(1997/2004)
I was with my wife and we both decided not to go back ever, despite the nice expat life that we could live.It is about the daily intollerance (from small to big) that I am talking about.
 
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I didn't think the '98 riots were anything to do with religion, rather food shortages and unemployment under Suharto... aided and abetted by elements of the military, with ethnic Chinese being targeted.

Still must have been scary at the time. especially if you were in one of the major cities.
 
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