Do Russians need a visa to Thailand and new visa rules

Do Russians need a visa to Thailand and new visa rules

Thailand thrives by welcoming millions of tourists each year. Everyone from airport staff to tuk-tuks subsists on the money that holidaymakers leave behind. For example, the annual passenger traffic from Russia is more than 1 million people.

This, of course, is not Turkey, which, until recent events, hosted 4.5 million Russians. But even that 1 million brings Thailand almost a billion dollars annually.

The practice of visa-free travel is mutually beneficial:

  • it saves you from unnecessary fuss.
  • It is convenient for those who do not have a bank account and official income that meets the entry requirements.
  • allows you to save $40.

Russians can stay in the country for up to 30 days without applying for a special permit.

How to enter Thailand without a visa

Whether you are traveling as part of an organized group or individually, there is no question of obtaining early entry clearance. On the plane, you fill out an immigration card (indicating the purpose of travel, destination, income, and other information) and a customs declaration.



departure card

If you do not bring anything forbidden or subject to additional taxes, and the value of the imported goods for personal use does not exceed 10 thousand baht (about $285), then check the box "Nothing to Declare". In the passport control area these papers together with your passport are presented to the immigration officer, who stamps the entry into the country.

From the date stamped, the Russian is entitled to stay in Thailand for up to 30 days.

A few years ago, having entered the country this way, you could stay there indefinitely, which is what many Russians used, living in Thailand on the money received from the rental of apartments. For this purpose, on the 29th day you had to leave the country, for example, to neighboring Cambodia, put the appropriate stamp and the next day to enter back, getting a new stamp for 30 days.


The Thai government decided to regulate this confusion and banned the practice. The official communiqué stated that those citizens who are not in the country as tourists must obtain an entry permit according to the actual purpose of their stay in the country. If it is a job, then the visa must be a work visa, if - a long vacation, then - multiple entry tourist visa.

Theoretically, you could still leave for a neighboring country today and risk re-entry. However, officially this maneuver is prohibited, and immigration officials with 90% probability will not give permission for visa-free entry. In this case, the ghostly question of whether or not a visa to Thailand is necessary for Russians becomes a very tangible one.

When you need a visa

Official permission for Russians to stay in Thailand is required in the following cases:

  • If the tourist trip lasts more than 30 days (TR visa).
  • If the purpose of the trip is treatment in Thailand, which will take more than 30 days (type "MT")
  • If you are employed or run your own business in Thailand (type "B")
  • If you perform official duties in Thailand (type "F").
  • If you are an investor affiliated with the Thai government (type "IM").
  • If the trip is of an educational nature (types "ED", "RS").
  • If you perform your duties as a representative of the mass media (type "M").
  • If you participate in religious and missionary programs (type "R").
  • If you are a highly qualified specialist or expert (type "EX").
  • If you are an accompanying person; a pensioner with a bank account in Thailand; a party to a lawsuit; doing business with the Thai government authorities, etc. (type "O").

In the first two cases the visa is considered a tourist visa. In the other two cases it is a non-immigrant visa. The difference between them is in the set of documents required for submission to the consular service.

Stamps on passport

In addition, there are transit visas (not required for Russians), special permits for diplomats and the so-called "courtesy visa", which is similar in nature to the diplomatic visa.

Visa validity period

Tourist or for the purpose of treatment ("TR", "MT"):

  • single entry - 3 months - uninterrupted stay for 60 days;
  • multiple entries - 6 months - continuous stay of 60 days.

Non-immigrant (business, work, educational and others listed above):

  • one-time - 3 months - uninterrupted stay for the whole period;
  • Multiple-entry - 3 to 12 months - continuous stay of 90 days, if there is no additional permission from the immigration authorities.


Permission to enter for tourist and therapeutic purposes since November 2015 is worth:

  • single time - $40;
  • multiple - $200.

Permission to enter for business, work, educational and other non-immigrant purposes as of November 2015 is worthwhile:

  • one time - $80;
  • multiple - $200.

What you need to get a long-term visa

Table. List of documents to obtain a permit to enter Thailand.



Passport with a validity period of six months or more. In case of multiple-entry permit for 12 months. - not less than 18 months.
Completed questionnaire.
The photo is 4x6 cm.

Financial support for the amount of 20 thousand baht (about $550) per person. Or sponsorship confirmation.


A certificate of yellow fever vaccination if the applicant has visited any country in Africa and some countries in Central and South America.


Copy of the main page of the passport

Depending on the purpose of the trip:

 - birth/marriage certificate;

- A copy of the diploma of qualification;

- an invitation from an educational institution;

- Letters from authorized government agencies;

- a letter from the employer;

- documents on cooperation of legal entities;

- employment contract;

- letters of recommendation.

Round trip tickets, paid, entry and exit dates are within the visa period
Certificate of employment (if any)
For "MT" visa - certificate of invitation from a Thai medical institution

Minors, in addition to the passport, must have a birth certificate. If not accompanied by parents - consent from them.

Documents in English, Russian or Thai are accepted. In other cases, a certified translation into English or Thai is required.

The questionnaire is filled out in English. Surnames, names, street names, etc. - in Latin letters, example of filling here.

Documents can be submitted in person or through an intermediary. A power of attorney is not required to obtain a visa.

Where to get a visa

You can obtain a long-term residence permit in Thailand from the Kingdom's representative offices located in the following cities:

  • Moscow

The Embassy is located at 9 Bolshaya Spasskaya Street.

  • St. Petersburg

The Consulate General is located at 9/6 Bolshoi Ave.

  • Vladivostok

The Honorary Consulate is located at - 10 Shchedrina St.

What happens if I stay in Thailand without a visa

Violation by foreigners of the regime of stay in the country is punishable by an administrative fine.

If you are without a visa for more than 30 days or have an expired visa, you will have to pay 500 baht for each day of illegal stay when leaving the country. If you are detected as an illegal alien outside the airport, a deportation order will be issued and your details will be put on a stop list.

While in the country you can always extend the visa or - if there is reason to do so - change the category by contacting the immigration authorities. Learn more about how to extend your Thai visa.

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