Overstaying your Thai Visa

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The Consequences of Overstaying in Thailand,

Thai Overstay Visa Stamp

Overstay Visa Stamp

Some ‘experienced travelers’ to Thailand will suggest that overstaying your Thai visa is not a problem and can easily be sorted at the airport when you depart by paying an over-stay fine. However, it can be a very different story if you get caught by the immigration police during your stay in Thailand and are asked to show your passport.

If you stay in Thailand for longer than the time authorized on your arrival, and you do not have an extension of stay or a valid visa, then this is an offense under Thai Immigration law. You will be fined 500 baht per day for every day you overstay, excluding the first day, up to a maximum of 20,000 baht. Any foreigner found by the authorities to have overstayed their visa is also at risk of being held in detention, fined and deported at their own expense.

You could find yourself being stopped by a random check on your way to the airport. If you are an overstayer, they will imprison you regardless of the length of time you overstayed, even if it’s just one day! You’ll be confined in an Immigration Detention Centre until you can arrange your flight out of Thailand and can pay the fine. Enforcement of the overstay laws has become more frequent and the consequences more sever since mid 2010.

If you can’t avoid overstaying though, it’s a good thing to surrender to the immigration office. If you do this, you will avoid imprisonment and further implications. If you accidentally overstay your visa and you surrender yourself at the airport or immigration office, you can quickly resolve the issue by paying a fine. However, as already mentioned above, if the police check your passport and arrest you, you’re in big trouble and if you can’t pay the fine and buy an onward ticket etc you will likely be detained until you can.

If you choose to continue overstaying your visa you will continue to be in violation of the term of your visa and will be breaking Thai law until you resolve the overstay. You should be extremely careful until your departure and avoid getting into any trouble. Once at the airport you will need to pay the overstay fine at the Passport Control officer.

To be a ‘persona-non-grata’ in Thailand is a very serious matter.

Note:

Deportation of foreigners is governed by the Immigration Act B.E.2522 (A.D.1979), Section 54:

Any foreigners who enters or comes to stay in the Kingdom without permission or when such permission expires or is revoked, the competent official will deport such foreigners out of the kingdom;

The provisions of Sections 19 and 20 will be applied ‘mutatis mutandis’ if an investigation for deportation has to be conducted in reference to item (a) above; Where an order of deportation is made, while waiting for the alien to be deported the competent official may order that alien to remain at any prescribed place or he may order the alien to report to him (competent official) according to a prescribed date, time, and place with security (personal guarantee) or with security and bond (e.g., cash or land title deed). The competent official may also detain the alien at any given place as may be necessary. The expense of detention shall be charged to the alien’s account; The provisions of Section 54 shall not apply to foreigners who entered and took up residence in the Kingdom before the enforcement of the Immigration Act. B.E. 2480 (A.D.1937).

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Updated: January 2, 2011 by admin

Comments

  1. i wonder if this can exceed the 500 baht fine per day ” The expense of detention shall be charged to the alien’s account”.
    Been living in Thaialnd for 10 years soon and immigratio rules gets changed like the weather changes (and not for the better). Best way to stay is probably with a non-B visa but depends upon your situation. If you are above 50 then get a retirement visa.

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