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Thailand Retirement Visa

What is the Thailand retirement visa?

Thailand's retirement visa is a special visa issued to non-Thais aged 50 and over who want to live in the country on a long-term basis.

Over the past 5 years, there has been a tremendous increase in the popularity of the visa. For example, in 2006, 18,650 retirement visas were issued, a 450% increase over 2004. The United Kingdom accounted for the largest share of visas issued, 18% in 2006, followed closely by the United States with 17% and the Scandinavian countries with 9%.

How long is the visa issued for?

The retirement visa is issued for a 1 year period with annual renewals thereafter.

What requirements do I need to meet to get a retirement visa?

The main requirement is financial. You need to meet one of the following:

  • Hold a bank account in Thailand with at least 800,000 baht.
  • Have an income from a source outside Thailand, such as a pension, of at least 65,000 baht monthly.
  • A combination of bank deposit and income that totals at least 800,000 baht over a year.

You need to meet this financial requirement for the initial application as well as future renewals. Other requirements for the initial application include a medical certificate, and in some cases, confirmation that you do not have a criminal record.

What are the benefits of the retirement visa?

The major benefit is that you can live in Thailand on a long-term basis.

There are also other important benefits:

  • You can import your personal possessions into Thailand duty free for up to 6 months after visa issuance.
  • You can easily purchase and register a car and get a Thai drivers license.
  • You can open bank accounts and obtain credit cards much more easily.

How do I apply for the retirement visa?

You can apply either in Thailand or in your home country:

  • In Thailand, you apply through the Immigration Bureau.
  • In your home country, you apply through your local Thai Embassy or consulate.

If applying outside Thailand, you will likely need to apply through the Thai embassy or consulate located in the country in which you hold citizenship.

Find out more - To find out more about more about the retirement visa and retiring in Thailand, contact us today.