Friday, July 18, 2014

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Border Run- It's a mistake to make mistake

No more border crossings

Most expats both working legal and illegally in the Kingdom have more questions than they have answers in the recent changes of Thai immigration regarding border crossings. The crackdown was announced in May saying that back-to-back border runs will soon be out of the picture because other people posting as tourists are using their tourist visas to work and live in Thailand which is in the first place, illegal.

The crackdown according to the immigration officials  is slated to begin on August 12 next month. However, some borders are already implementing the changes. There were reports from ThaiVisa about foreigners being denied entry back to Thailand after they crossed the border in the south. 

Image: Thai Visa
Other borders won't let you out

If border immigration in the south won't let you back in, Maesot immigration in Tak province won't let you out. A few months back, I heard from friends that some people who planned to do border run in Maesot weren't allowed to leave Thailand. And since the reason for exit is to extend an expiring visa, they technically overstayed, hence, 500 baht a day was charged to each one of them when they get to Laos. There's no doubt officials in Maesot knew that if they let them leave, they will just cross the border and be back in just a couple of minutes. But still, being denied back in is a hell of a nightmare than being denied exit especially if you're only doing border runs. 

What we did for an expiring 60-day tourist visa

My mom and my aunt's 60-day tourist visa is going to expire on the 21st of this month. Since they plan to get back home in the middle of August, since no one knows how things are going to be, and given the fact that other officials are implementing the new rule, it is better to be safe than sorry. 

I called Maesot immigration and was told they indeed won't let tourist do any border runs anymore. No 30, 15 or even 7 days extension. If you exit, don't come back just yet. Officials won't let you back in.

So we settled to have their visas renewed in Phitsanulok and paid the 1,900 baht each extension fee. If you aren't sure of what to do better contact the people in authority. In situation like this, it's a mistake to make mistake.

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About the Author

Khon Philippine

I'm a full time travel and tourism lecturer at a university in the north who also loves blogging during my spare time. I blog about news particularly in Thailand, personal travel stories, and anything under the sun.