The Government of Thailand just passed the approval for the prolongation of the long-stay visa of senior tourists to ten years from the previous of one year. The new long-stay visa costs 10,000 Bhatt. On the 22nd of November 2016, the Ministry of Public Health informed the cabinet regarding the rising number of senior foreign nationals who wish to stay in Thailand for a longer period of time. A principle goal of Thailand is to become a destination renowned for Medical and Wellness Tourism, so in order to achieve this goal, the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Tourism and Sports discussed together to formulate a new long-stay visa applicable for 10 years. This new extension would be available to citizens from 14 countries which includes Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The criteria for the visa includes:
- The applicant must be above the age of 50 years and should place an application for the O-A visa at the Thai consulate in their country of origin, or in the case where a tourist travelling under a different visa requires their visa status to be changed to O-A, they are capable of doing so but the visa would be restricted to five years with multiple entry. The individual has the option to reapply for the visa once again after five years for renewal of the O-A visa.
- The fee incurred to obtain the O-A visa is 10,000 THB
- When submitting the application, the applicant must also submit their personal bank statement showing a minimal balance of 3 million THB or provide sufficient evidence proving a minimum income of 100,000THB monthly. When applying for renewal of the visa, the applicant must resubmit the account statement showing a balance exceeding that of the previous one together with evidence demonstrating a 100,00 THB minimum monthly income. But, during the course of the first year of the initial five year visa, the applicant should maintain a balance of 3 million THB or monthly 100,000 THB minimum monthly income, following which the applicant is prohibited from withdrawing funds equivalent to 50% of the available amount. The individual must also handover personal withdraw statements for the payments made within Thailand.
- The application must also include a medical insurance with a validity of one year which includes the following coverage : 3,000,000 THB for Inpatient.
- Applicant must report to the Immigration Bureau once in every 3 months.
- The applicant has the option of accompanying their spouse and children, if the spouse is above the age of 50 years, they are eligible for an O-A visa. It is compulsory to submit their own bank statements when applying for the above mentioned visa. If the spouse if of less than 50 years, they are eligible for an O visa, but for children less than 21 years, they can accompany their parents to visit Thailand for education purposes and would be given a a non-immigrant visa type (ED). They have the right to buy automobiles, apartments in Thailand (as per the Condominium Act of 1981) using the cash wired from their native bank to their personal Thai bank account. Additionally, this should be accompanied by a letter of certification issued by the bank verifying the above transfer.
Note: Any individual ineligible for the 10 year O-A visa has the option to apply for the one year O-A visa.
Regarding the revisions made on 15 December 2017: The newly formulated senior citizen visa is a collaboration between the Public Health & Tourism ministries. It was approved by the cabinet and is currently under the Interior ministry. There are no substantial details confirming the exact information within it. The process would at require a minimum of three months for completion. The information provided above was delivered by the Tourism and Sports ministry. There may be changes to the above details. I would swiftly notify you of any such amendments via my page.
Source: Foreign Office, The Government Public Relations and the Ministry of Tourism and Sports