If you are looking to stay in Thailand for an extended stay then a Student Visa might be a good choice for you. Most of the major cities have several schools that are aimed at teaching foreigners from all over the world the Thai Language. If you are planning on studying anyway then it is a pretty good choice. Usually, you can get a 12 to 15 month visa with little problem and you can renew it with the school for a few years each year if you so desire. Unfortunately, many people take advantage of this visa and end up not going to school and just using it as an easy way to get a Visa to the country. One thing I have learned about Thailand is there are many ways to get a Visa and if you some cash on you, there are lots of possibilities.

I call the student visa where you do not have to go to school the Fake Student Visa and will cost about double the cost of a regular student visa and the company that you are dealing with will do all the paper work for you. To be honest you probably will not have a problem with that kind of visa but sometimes they do crackdowns on foreigners or they might test you in the immigration office and if you are not ready to speak some Thai, well you might get your visa revoked and a quick exit out of the country.

However, if you want to actually go to school which I suggest is a good idea then signing up to one of the schools is a great choice. You usually go to school two or three times a week for one or two hour sessions. We are not talking about full time hours here. I enjoy learning the language though I often get frustrated but the challenge is half the fun and learning how to read and write can also help you in your daily living in Thailand.

Student Visa Process Thailand

Getting a real student visa is relatively easy. You can visit some schools online or in person and see if the school is a right fit for you. If you are already in the country then you will have to fill out some documents, take a copy of your passport and a number of passport size photos will also be needed in order to be used for immigration. If you have never had a student visa before then you will have to either be out of the country already or you will have to leave the country to get the process started. If your status is already out of the country then they would send you the forms and you would deal with a local Thai Embassy. If you are in the country of Thailand you will have to leave the country for a day or two, there are lots of visa border runs available and the school you are dealing with will help you out I am sure.

The visa run is pretty easy, you give all your paper work to the company doing the border run then you just sit back and let them do most of the work. You can also do the run by yourself but if you are new to Thailand it might be a bit overwhelming, sure you will save a little money but the headaches of travelling back and forth to countries and filling out paperwork might be a little scary for the rookie.

Once you complete the initial run you can start going to school. The only thing that you need to do is check in with Immigration with your paperwork (that the school will help you with), some photos and usually about 1900 Baht for the check in process. It is here if you are not going to school that you might get into a little trouble if they feel like quizzing you on your Thai knowledge, do they always do it, no they do not but it would be nice to have some actually Thai language skills when you visit.

The process at immigration is pretty simply, there is a student/family visa section of immigration. You pick a number, then wait around to your number is called and the process from there is pretty fast. The only issue would be if there was a big line and you had to wait for a while, it happens. I recommend if you can avoid it not going on a Monday or a Friday as those are the busy days and do not go just before they close as you might not have enough time to get the visa completed. I have also noticed in the past if I go just before lunch they tell me to come back in the afternoon, just a few things to be aware of.

So there you have it, please feel free to ask any questions about the Student Visa Process and if you are really serious about learning Thai they try to go to as many classes as you can. If you are just interested in getting one of those fake student visas then I would suggest you going to a visa company and talking to them about it, I am not a personal fan of them, I think it is a much better idea to actually go to school. In future posts I will talk about the schools themselves, the process of how they teach and what you can expect.

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