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how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

NYC
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how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

I plan on visiting Thailand for upwards of 6 months. I plan on obtaining a tourist visa to start, which I understand will be valid for 60 days, then extending my visa as needed, or else "re-booting" my visa by traveling to other countries. My question is, can I book a flight with a return date 6 months after my departure date if my tourist visa is only good for 2 months? Or would I have to book a flight with a return date within the 2 month period, then change the return as needed with the airline? I'm concerned that the airline might not let me depart if my return date is well after my visa expiry date, even though I know I can extend that date once in Thailand.

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Luang Prabang, Laos
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1. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

So long as your passport has at least 6 months validity you will have no problems. Just arrange a border hop to Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia or Malaysia for a day to recommence your 60 day visa.

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Hell, Norway
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2. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Travelling to neighbouring countries does not recommence your visa. A 60 day tourist visa is valid for a single entry only, but you can apply for a double entry visa if they will issue it. Once you have used the visa, crossing back into Thailand by air will get you a 30 day visa waiver stamp, crossing by land gets you15 days. see the Visa FAQS on the top right.

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NYC
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3. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Many thanks for the information. What I'm really wondering about is the plane reservation. Will the airline give me a hard time, or even prevent me from departing, if my return flight is scheduled for a date after my visa expires?

Victoria, Australia
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4. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Can you just book one way and worry about your return flight later. It would cost the same.

Linda

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5. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

If you have a visa in your passport, then you don't have to worry about return/onward tickets. If you want a visa waiver stamp you must have an onward or return ticket or the airline can refuse to board you - they have to pay for your flight home if immigration refuse you entry. Don't take risks.

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6. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Dragonc, "Travelling to neigbouring countries does not recommence your visa". I am a little confused and certainly respect your contributions. I travel to Thailand often on a 30 day visa and remain for many months. During these stays I simply "pop off" to another country for a night or 2 and return to Thailand. This gives me a further 30 days visa which I would interpret as a recommencement of visa. I also book one way only as I never know when I am going to return. Airlines here tell me that is okay as long as my passport has more than 6 months validity at time of departure. Would be interested in your comments. Also great work on keeping people informed regarding the demonstraions in Bangkok.

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Bangkok
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7. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Dragonc, I am a little confused about your statement too. We live here, and know lots of people who go for "visa runs" to renew their visa.

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8. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

bigfishAustralia, what you're getting is a 30-day EXEMPTION or WAIVER, which is not a visa. When you leave the country and return, you're not "recommencing" anything. You're getting a new exemption which entitles you to stay 30 days if arriving by air, or 15 days if arriving by land, each time you enter.

A tourist visa (which must be applied for in advance and is currently free of charge) gives you the right to stay 60 days. You can apply to extend that for an additional 30 days at an immigration office at a cost of 1900 baht. But if you leave the country the visa is "used" and becomes invalid. As DragonC said, you can get multi-entry visas. But this is unnecessary if each stay is for less than 30 days and you're entitled to an exemption.

The big thing is, the official rules for the exemption say you must have proof of onward air travel within the 30 days. Some airlines (especially in Europe or the US) will refuse to let you board unless you have a return or ongoing ticket within the 30 days OR a visa. So if you're planning a longer stay, usually you must get a visa.

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9. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Trekker74, the answer is: usually not. But it's possible that some airline check-in agents are not aware of the distinction, so there's no guarantee they won't give you a hard time. This is all in the interest of the airline protecting their collective rear end, since they theoretically face a big fine and having to return you for free of charge if you're denied entry. In practise, the Thai Immigration officers just about never ask for the proof of onward travel. Maybe if

they they had some suspicions you were planning to stay and seek employment. Or you presented a passport full of serial 30-day entries.

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10. Re: how to book a flight for an extended stay with tourist visa?

Hi,

Small point of correction..

"... and having to return you for free of charge if you're denied entry."

Not always.. Some airlines, such as Cathay Pacific for example, have very explicit language in their Contract of Carriage that says in effect, if you are denied entry to the destination country for failing to hold or posses the necessary permits, visas or such, the airline will hold you liable for any expenses incurred for things such as fines *and* costs to fly you out of the country.

Cathay Pacific Contract of Carriage:

…cathaypacific.com/cx/misc/conditionsofcarri…

Travel Safe,