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My Elite Visa Application (Day 1 until the End)


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OK. 

I will try to speed up the information to avoid the confusion.

After I submitted my package for the Retirement Visa, the Thai Embassy held onto it as I as in the middle of the Coronavirus/Covid19 Shutdown.

They contacted me and gave me verbal approval but indicated they cannot issue any Retirement Visas yet.

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The thread is already getting very confused as a result of interjections. It might be better if people wait until the OP finishes his (lengthy) story and then ask questions at the end if necessary!

I got Elite 2 years ago after years of short term visas, and seeing my mate get denied at the airport with a valid tourist(3mo) visa.  I had done the math and for myself flying in/out + hotels for vis

So now it is a waiting game.  I am in step #2 on the chart.   I will update this as I receive any information or have any stumbling blocks. I tried to be thorough so there would be no questi

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The Thai Embassy in the USA held my application from February to July 2020

At the end of July they returned my entire packett and informed me Thailand was not accepting Retirement Visas in 2020 (so far).

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Like most of us I was and am going bat shit crazy.

I had been planning my retirement and this time off for years if not decades.

I began to look for alternatives.

Elite Visa became an option.

 

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Posted (edited)

One of the issues I had was proving my medical insurance.

The Thai embassy would not accept proof of my medical insurance.

Due to personal time constraints I decided to use the medical providers the Thai Embassy recommended and recognized.

I ended up paying $1,450 for medical insurance for the year, despite having 100% coverage with my ex-employer.

This is vital, as this $ plays into the math equation to help me decide my future Visa.

Edited by LASportsNut
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So while I was very pissed off and disappointed about the system and the process, I realize 90% of it was the current situation with the coronavirus.  

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Around the same time, someone on PA posted something about the Elite Visa.

I saw this and was familiar with it.

i decided to apply for the Elite Visa.

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34 minutes ago, LASportsNut said:

Thanks Davidge,

Sorry for being "lengthy" however it all helps explain the decision making and will assist others with their decisions in the future.

It wasn’t a criticism, just an observation :)

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It wasn’t a criticism, just an observation [emoji4]

I understand.

Thanks for monitoring this discussion.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
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Yep. I will follow up soon.

I apologize if I lost some of you along the way.

I have been lost on long submissions and short submissions alike.

I will try to keep that in mind.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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7 hours ago, LASportsNut said:

Greetings everyone.

Like most of us, I have been miserable waiting for the travel restrictions to end.

It appears it is much more serious and/or problematic than most expected.

I have been following the Thailand Embassy restrictions closely.  I have been zigging and zagging trying to come up with a solution for "my" needs.

Here is my story.  This includes my most normal travel to Thailand as well as most recent and current Visa request(s):

I have been traveling to Thailand and Pattaya since 2012. 

I always traveled 30 days each May and again 30 days each November (2012-2018).  

In March 2019 I retired and was able to spend 180 days in Thailand.

I traveled May to July with side trips to Japan and Vietnam to break up the 30 day travel restrictions.

I then returned to Los Angeles, California, USA from August to mid September.

I then repeated a similar Thailand trip from September to November, however I substituted China (Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Shanghai and Taiwan) to break up the 30 days.

 

looking forward to following your journey as this may be me in a few years. 

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Day #1 (August 3, 2020)-

I googled "Thailand Elite Visa" and received a lot of results. 

After reviewing the results I realized most are companies who are agencies .  The top sites I found are the following:

There were other results but most of those were links to articles written about the positives and negatives of obtaining an Elite Visa.

So I had to decide.  I ended up choosing the last option, Thailand Elite.

I chose Thailand Elite, because their website was easier to navigate and it also had more information.

To be continued. . .

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Day #1 (August 3, 2020) Continued-

I surfed their site and found a "Member Application Process." 

I have attached it here for everyone to review.

 

Member Application Process1.jpg

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Retiring next year with the intention of  purchasing a  Thailand Elite Visa, so following your journey with interest. Although i was under the impression the 

  • 500,000 baht for 5 years was for frequent business traveler's 
  • 1,000,000 baht for 10 years was for long stay tourists 
Edited by SteveM
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Day #1 (August 3, 2020) Continued-

I looked around some more and realized all the great privileges:

Plus the had a great FAQ page.

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Day #1 (August 3, 2020) Continued-

After reviewing the 5, 10 or 20 year options, I decided I would apply for the 5-year Elite Visa costing 500,000 baht.

So following is me talking myself into it:

I know this is expensive. But with me being retired and planning on being in Thailand for 8 months a year, it saves me money in other areas.

I will save the cost of airfare each month, as I always fly to a neighboring Asian country every 30 days and return to Thailand.  Though this is great to see the other countries, I prefer to be able to stay in Thailand and come and go as I please.

I will be able to lease a condo long-term instead of staying in hotels, this could save me a lot.

I also save the cost to purchase Thai medical Insurance.  My current policy is more than enough, but like I mentioned earlier the Thai Embassy was not accepting my documents as proof of insurance.

I will also save some miscellaneous amounts with all the other privileges.   I do like to visit Bangkok when I arrive and depart so I will take advantage of the limousine services to also save some more expense. 

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2 minutes ago, Recce said:

I read an interesting article about the current elite visa situation. Link below:

https://www.imidaily.com/asia-pacific/thailand-elite-visa-to-offer-health-insurance-package-european-interest-grows-in-q1/ 

Good information, Thanks.

I saw one of the privileges they currently have as an option is Health Insurance

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Looking forward to hearing how this plays out.  Thanks for sharing.

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Posted (edited)

Day #1 (August 3, 2020) Continued-

I applied very easily and they sent me a link with a password to get into their website along with 4 documents:

  1. Elite Easy Access Information
  2. The Membership Application Process Chart I shared with everyone above
  3. A consent form with all the regulations that I had to sign and date in two places and return.
  4. Instructions on completing the online Application.

It should be noted, item #3 above also asked the following questions:

  1. Do you have 3 empty pages on my current passport?
  2. Are you holding any valid Thai Visa? If yes, what type and what is the expiration date?
  3. How many times have you overstayed in Thailand in the last 3 years?
  4. What is your main reason to become a Thailand Elite member?
  5. What is your expectation of being a Thailand Elite member?

So on to step 4.  After logging in I had to complete 3 more steps:

  1. Complete my personal information (Name, address, Passport # and date issued and date expires).
  2. Uploaded a digital passport type photo
  3. Uploaded a photo of the information page of my passport.

After submitting the information I received an email stating:

 

Consent form with additional information has been well received. Copy of your passport with consent form will be sent for the immigration approval, which may take about 1 month. Once approved, you will receive an approval letter via email with banking details for payment. We will keep you updated throughout the application process. 

Should you have any question, please do not hesitate to contact us any time.

Edited by LASportsNut
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Following with interest - thanks for posting!

The more that everything is being handled remotely in the legal profession, the more I am thinking about getting my ass out of California! Nevada holds some appeal (tax rates; lower cost of housing), but much longer visits to Thailand also may be appealing.

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No matter which Elite you buy, they all have a 5 year window before renewal, you just lock in the rate for the 10 and 20 year, correct? 

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, dnaliaht said:

No matter which Elite you buy, they all have a 5 year window before renewal, you just lock in the rate for the 10 and 20 year, correct? 

Correct!

5, 10 or 20 year rates.

Edited by LASportsNut
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Posted (edited)

I forgot to mention they are currently offering an extra 6 months free extension with the 5- year Elite Visa.

So I get 5 1/2 years, plus it is my understanding you can apply for a one year extension at the end of the Elite Visa as well (for 1900 baht). 

So 501,900 baht divided by 78 months averages to a total of 6435 baht a month.  

My plan is after 6 1/2 years to reevaluate the cost to apply for another 5 years or apply for a Retirement Visa.

Edited by LASportsNut
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2 hours ago, LASportsNut said:

So now it is a waiting game.  I am in step #2 on the chart.  

I will update this as I receive any information or have any stumbling blocks.

I tried to be thorough so there would be no questions, but I may have left something out.

If anyone has any questions you can post here or PM me.

Since you haven't paid anything yet for the Elite Visa, I'll throw this suggestion out to you. When you're finally able to enter Thailand again, enter Thailand as a tourist using the 30 day visa exemption. Then follow the steps for obtaining a Non-O visa which you can do yourself, or hire an agent to handle the paperwork.

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