Im heading to thailand in a month and i am about ready to apply for my visa. My plan is to fly into bankok then spend about a month in chang mai/chang rai arrea the head to laos for a week or so. I would then probably head south and stay the next two months in souther thailand/malaysia. My question is since i would be entering the country technically three times do i need to pay the $35 fee three times for each entry or can i just do two since i would only be entering once from laos and once from malaysia over land? would it be ok just using my 30 visa exemption after arriving by air then using the two entrys toward the times when i arrive by land?
If you can get a double or even triple-entry tourist visa before your trip that will give you maximum flexability. You'll typically need at least some visa to show when you board the flight from the US anyway. Then use your available entries judiciously, and remember if/when the entries run out you can still get 30 days visa-exempt re/entering Thailand by air (15 days if entering by land).
your first entry of arriving in bangkok by air fits the first leg of your trip just fine, since you'll get a 30-day exemption at the airport, which is what you'll need before you head over to laos. those 30-day exemption-on-arrival stamps are free.
but after that, you've got some logistics to work out, since unless you are flying back into thailand from laos, as Bob mentions above you'll only get 15 days exemption arriving by land, which doesn't fit your two months plan for southern thailand. you'll need a visa-on-arrival for laos too by the way, so have your $35 to $40 in us cash if you can plus a few passport-sized photos for the application.
you can apply for a 60-day tourist visa when you are in laos at the thai embassy in vientiane. that will give you the time you need, but will cost money and time and limit your flexibility.
i like Bob's suggestion of getting the multi-entry visa if you can, since that way it is all sorted ahead of time and you won't have to waste part of your holiday tracking down a visa. even just the two entries should sort you out fine, since you can get that last entry as a 15-day arrival by land exemption from malaysia back into thailand, which should be enough to get you back up to BKK for the return flight.
clear as mud?
Thanks for the responses! so just that i am making this clear what im asking, i just sent in my $70 to the thai embassy in los angeles for my two entries on a tourist visa. I will:
-Fly into bkk from la and have a 30 day emption visa by.
-spend about that amount of time in northern thailand
-head to laos for a couple weeks
-then head back to thailand and use ONE of the prepaid entries visa to get back in
-spend a couple months approx in thailand
-then go to indonesia for a while
-then come back to thailand on the second entry that i paid for on the visa
-then fly out.
On another note, when i paid for two entries, that only gives me entry into the country two times within that 90 day period correct? or can it be used 90 days per entry?
Warning. I flew into Bangkok last November with a double entry visa meaning to leave next day for Cambodia.I asked immigration if they'd just give me the 30 day visa exemption stamp to leave my Thai visa intact.He was adamant it was NOT possible and duly stamped one of my visa entries which left me with only the one entry left.I hope you get better luck but be aware.
The visa is a large stamp which takes up one page of your passport. You may have better luck than me. Thai immigration law is pretty complex and I doubt even individual immigration officers understand it fully but my post was just a heads up.Anyway good luck on your trip.
Sound like another thing they've changed recently sayadian. I've asked for them to not stamp visas and just give me an entry stamp a few times and they've always been OK with with it. Maybe something to do with the fact that visas were free last year?
Could be that my visa was stamped 'gratis' hadn't thought of that.The only thing I've found consistent about Thai immigration at Suvannbhumi is that they never ask for proof of anything before giving you the entry stamp; however on land borders I HAVE been asked for airline tickets, proof of funds etc and last week coming through wonderful Poipet I was actually searched by customs.This was an absolute first for me.I meet people in Phnom Penh who live in Thailand and have to rotate consulates in order to continue to receive tourist visas as apparently they'll only issue 2 from one consulate, for example, PP then you have to go to Vientiane.Anybody know about this?