90-DAY REPORTING Registering Your Address at Thai Immigration
If you are an alien staying in Thailand for more than three consecutive months, you must report to your local Thai immigration office every 90 days. The 90-day reporting in Thailand is not an extension of your Thai visa. It is just to register your address in Thailand.
The 90-day rule applies to any consecutive number of days you stay in Thailand. If you leave the country, the 90-day cycle begins again from the date you re-enter Thailand. You must also report at the immigration office that has jurisdiction over the area in which you live.
There is no fee for the 90-day reporting in Thailand, unless you are late in which case there is a fine of 2,000 baht that rises to a maximum of 5,000 baht if you are arrested. However, travelling to the immigration centre can be a major inconvenience, depending on where you live. It is also a seemingly pointless exercise in bureaucracy, especially as Thai immigration doesn’t make any money out of it.
In Bangkok, the immigration office is located at the massive government complex way out at Chaeng Wattana Soi 7 in Laksi District. Until recently, it used to be centrally located at Soi Suan Phlu, just off Sathorn Road. While the building was old and overcrowded, it was at least conveniently located. However, the Suan Phlu office now only deals with “aliens” from Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.
To get to the Chaeng Wattana complex, I recommend taking the BTS (sky-train) or MRT (subway) to Morchit and then taking a taxi from there. It should cost about 100 baht by taxi from Morchit. If you come back the same way, the taxi from Chaeng Wattana to Morchit is usually about 20 baht more due to having to go the wrong way before making a u-turn in two separate places. A taxi direct from downtown Bangkok will be around 250 to 300 baht, plus expressway fees if you take that option.
At Chaeng Wattana Soi 7, make sure the driver enters the soi and takes you to the last building on the right. If he drops you off at the end of the soi, you will have to walk almost a kilometre to the 90-day reporting section. The complex is HUGE!
When you arrive at the correct building, you can either enter from the side or the back. If you enter from the side facing Soi 7, walk ahead until you reach an atrium big enough to host professional football games. Turn left and follow the signs. If you enter through the back door, and who doesn’t from time to time, it’s the second door on your right after you enter.
If you haven’t already filled in a form (Download Here), you will be given one at the reception/information desk. In addition to your address, you need to provide information about your visa and passport. No photos are required.
After you fill in the form, continue through another door to a large open-plan room where several services are provided, including the issuance of re-entry visas and the transfer of valid visas to a new passport. At the reception desk, tell them you are there for the 90-day reporting, take a number, turn right, and head to the small room in the corner.
It is somewhat ironic that – considering the size of the complex and the volume of people forced to confirm their address every 90 days – the 90-day reporting room is not much bigger than a sky-train carriage.
When your number is called, you hand over your passport and form, and then you start another wait until your paperwork has been processed. Everything is still done manually, making it is a slow and laborious process that usually takes about an hour. Considering that it takes roughly an hour each way to travel from downtown Bangkok, it becomes a major and seemingly pointless inconvenience.
So, are there any alternatives in Bangkok? There were rumours that the service was also being provided at the BOI office in Chamchuree Square on Rama IV Road. However, this service is only provided for BOI registered companies and their employees. They definitely refuse to process anyone who has already reported to Chaeng Wattana, but if it’s your first time, you may want to give it a try.
To get there, either take a taxi to Chamchuree Square or head to Sam Yan MRT (subway). From the subway, take the exit directly into the Tesco Lotus food court and make your way up the escalator. Walk through the shopping centre (Chamchuree Square) and past several restaurants, banks and other shops. Take the office lifts to the 18th floor.
The 90-day reporting can also be done by registered mail now, and this seems to be the best current option. You need to send the following information:
Copy of all passport pages (up to the latest arrival stamp in the Kingdom or latest visa stamp)
Copy of arrival/departure card TM.6 (front and back)
Previous notifications of staying over 90 days (if any)
Envelope with 5 Baht stamp affixed and return address of foreigner for the officer in charge to send back the lower part of form TM. 47 after having received the notification. This part must be kept for reference and for future notifications of staying over 90 days.
The above mentioned documents must be sent by registered mail and the receipt of the registration kept by the foreigner. Send the mail 7 days before the renewal date to:
90 DAYS REGISTRATION,
IMMIGRATION DIVISION 1
120 MOO 3, CHAENGWATTANA ROAD, SOI 7,
LAKSI, BANGKOK. 10210
Some entrepreneurial agencies (massage parlours mostly), are offering to handle your 90-day reporting for you in return for a fee of 1,000 baht, provided you have filled in the necessary paperwork beforehand.
Outside of Bangkok, the process is basically the same although usually a little faster due to lower volumes of people. There are immigration offices all over the country in provincial capitals and tourist destinations.
Even if you have lived at the same address in Thailand for 11 years, have a valid one-year Thai non-immigrant B visa that you renew each year, have a valid work permit, pay more tax than 98% of the Thai population, employ Thai staff, provide a valuable service to the Thai community, support a Thai family, speak Thai, know more about Thai geography and history than 99% of the Thai population, can eat very spicy food, love the King and are a generally an all-round top bloke, you still have to report to Thai immigration every 90 days.
As one irate farang pointed out: in England you would only have to do this if you were a registered sex offender, and even then it would only be when you changed address.
I would strongly recommend that you handle your 90-day reporting in Thailand by registered post.
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Have your say...
14 Mar 2011, 18:47
Most comprehensive and sensible assessment of a day trip to the Passport
Office I have found. A map of Cheng Wattana would complete. I'm sat in a
taxi writing this and could be on my way to Ayuthaya for all I know.
01 Aug 2011, 01:10
from sathorn have the taxi take you up Naritiwat, onto the expressway, left
or right, doesnt seem to make a difference. Give him your fifty five baht
troll fee(45, then ten later) and if your lucky he should get you there for
about a hundred baht extra.
Do not go at luch time as this will cost you an extra hour. GO EARLY.