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How To Extend Your Thai Tourist Visa in Chiang Mai
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Oct 02 2014

How to Extend Your Thai Tourist Visa in Chiang Mai

We previously wrote about how to get a Thai tourist visa and, with a multiple-entry visa, how to extend each entry. This time, we will go more in depth on the extension process which can be used to extend any 60-day entry for another 30 days.

We have triple-entry tourist visas and we just extended our first entry (valid 60 days) for another 30 days (giving us 90 total days on our first entry). The extension is added to the end of your entry period, so you don’t have to go the day it expires. In fact, we recommend applying for your extension at least a week before the “valid until” date on your stamp in case you have any difficulties or the immigration office is full the day you go.

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The office will officially open for business at 8:30 a.m. Monday-Friday. When we went, they opened the doors to start assigning the first round of numbers at 7:30 a.m. We arrived at 6:30 a.m. and there were already about 40 people in line, some had been there since 5:30 a.m.

There are yellow signs indicating the beginning of a couple different lines depending on your reason for visiting. Visa extensions are in the far left line, however it did not appear to matter too much where you stood, because as you enter, each person is handed a blue queue number. The Way of Slow Travel explains the queue numbers like this:

The blue number is not the final queue number; it’s a simple queue number required to get a second number. When your blue laminated number is called, go up to the counter and explain your purpose (tourist visa extension). The agent will give you an actual queue number on a piece of paper.

The reason for this two-step queue number attribution is that there are different queues for different immigration functions. These range from visa extensions to business visa applications and non-immigrant visa check-ins. Since you’re extending a tourist visa, you’ll probably have a number starting with 0. Time to wait.

We did not have to deal with the two number system. When we entered, perhaps because it was less crowded than other days, we were immediately given our final numbers (004 and 005) and took a seat in the waiting area.

There are rows of seats inside and a small café outside with tables and more chairs. The café, which serves coffee, cinnamon buns and small breakfast pastries, opened at 8:30 a.m.

We had a short wait and were called to the counter at 9 a.m. We handed over our materials, paid for the extension, and sat back down. After another 15 minutes, our names were called and our visas with the new stamp were handed back to us. Pretty painless! The officers were pleasant, spoke English well, and helped us fill our forms out properly.

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What You Need

  • Passport
  • 2″ x 2″ photo
  • Thai visa extension request form TM 7
  • Photocopies of the passport photo page, visa page, visa stamp page, and departure card
  • Your complete address of residence and a local phone number or email address
  • 1900 THB fee in cash (60 USD)

If you do not have a printer or forget one of your forms, there is a photocopy station to the left of the immigration office. Black and white copies can be made for 2 THB each. In the same building, there is a station where you can have your photo taken and they can print it on site in case you don’t have your passport picture ready.

The T-7 forms are available online, or in a basket on the main desk inside the immigration office (in Thai and English).

How to extend your tourist visa in chiang mai

To the left of the main building where you can have photocopies made and photos taken

Parking

The entrance to the immigration is just past a large arch if you are coming from the Old City. There is no car parking, but if you arrive on a scooter, pull into the second driveway. When we arrived there were cones out in front and the gate was half-closed, but this is the official auxiliary parking area for the immigration office. You might see an officer directing scooter traffic to the gate.

Good luck! Let us know if you had a different experience extending your visa at the Chiang Mai immigration office or if you have any questions.

14 Comments
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Eric
poplartravels@gmail.com

Evanne and Eric left jobs in Washington, D.C., headed for Chiang Mai, and look forward to exploring everywhere in between.

14 Comments
  • Roger Chase
    Reply

    Thank you for the info! I will be in Thailand next week and have the 60 day tourist visa (single, unfortunately), but I’m anticipating extending it. I was just wondering if you could elaborate on the departure card as my present return flight had to be within that 60 days. Thank you!

    January 8, 2015 at 1:52 pm
  • Hey Roger,

    Thanks for commenting! The departure card that you receive upon entry to Thailand will be needed for the extension application. They will stamp your passport and departure card with the new “admitted until” date once your application is approved. You can then change your return flight date.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    -Eric

    January 9, 2015 at 4:29 pm
  • Robert Rhau
    Reply

    Great info thanks for your help. I was curious if they grant 30 day extensions for the Visa On Arrival? Trying to stay long enough to get approved for an ED visa. Really appreciate your help!

    January 21, 2015 at 7:16 pm
    • Hello Robert,

      Let me first start by saying that visa rules in Thailand are tricky and often inconsistent. The “Visa On Arrival’ is available to citizens of the following countries: Bhutan, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Maldives, Mauritius, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Taiwan, Ukraine

      If you are a citizen of one of the above countries then visit http://www.immigration.go.th/nov2004/en/base.php?page=voa for further info.

      If you are not a citizen of one of those countries then you can try to get a “Visa Exempt” stamp upon arrival. The visa exempt stamp can be extended for 30 days at the local immigration office, giving you a total of 60 days on the one stamp.

      I hope this is helpful. If you let me know which country you are a citizen of and which city in Thailand you will be flying into, I can give you some more specific info. 🙂

      January 21, 2015 at 9:41 pm
  • Hi Robert, we are currently in Chiang Mai on a (G7) 30 day visa free exemption received via land entry from Laos. I have found conflicting information about how long this can be extended – some say 7 and some 30. We’d like to stay for another 20ish days after the expiration of our initial 30 days. Do we have to fly in/out of Thailand or cross another land border to get another 30 day free exemption or can they extend this at the Chiang Mai immigration office? THANK YOU!

    February 1, 2015 at 12:12 pm
    • Hey!
      I just checked on this a few days ago so here is the most up to date info: You can extend your G7 30 day visa exempt stamp for an additional 30 days for a fee of 1,900 baht at the Chiang Mai Immigration Office (you can only do this once). Arrive early in the morning and bring the necessary documents and you will be fine. You can not have two back to back visa exempt stamps as of August 2014 or you risk being turned away. Let me know if you have any other questions! 🙂

      February 1, 2015 at 8:34 pm
      • Heading over there tomorrow. Thanks a ton for your help!

        February 8, 2015 at 8:01 pm
        • No problem! I hope you have a great trip!

          February 9, 2015 at 11:58 am
  • Tom
    Reply

    Hi Eric. Firstly, thanks for such an informative article – I plan on extending my current 30 day visa exemption in CM soon. Secondly, when you say you can’t have two back to back visa exemption stamps… I have two visa exemption stamps (one previous and my current one) but I was in Malaysia for 2 weeks in between. Do you think I’ll be ok?

    March 22, 2015 at 5:11 pm
    • Evanne
      Reply

      Hello Tom, You should be alright if you have a stamp for Malaysia for your 2 week trip. If for some reason you are denied an extension then wait a few days and try again. Let me know how it goes!

      Eric

      March 23, 2015 at 1:02 pm
  • obo
    Reply

    I think the tourist visa extensions especially for visa exempt countries is easier and less paper work for them.
    I went in for the second time after seeing what a madhouse it was the first time and listening to some people who were waiting there from 2am. But for me it was fill out the form inluding your local mobile and email as it is not listed on the form but required.Then get a number from the middle queue booth then wait 15 mins to get my name called out and pay and get my picture taken and it was out the door. I think for long term stayers business etc you have to wait longer get an interview etc which I saw today.

    April 21, 2015 at 12:31 pm
  • scott
    Reply

    Hey guys, thanks for this post, it really helps. I just had a couple of questions. I got to Chiang Mai on the 15th April and got a stamp that gave me valid stay until 15th May (30 days – basic tourist visa I guess, I didn’t request any particular type of visa before I landed.

    I’m planning to stay here for around 3 months, and am wondering what is the best way to go about getting an extension for that period?

    Am I correct in thinking that you can only visit the chiang mai (or any) immigration office once to get an extra 30 days and not again?

    Do you guys know whether you can get longer border hopping over and back and getting stamped on re-entry, from such as to Mae Sai to Burma and back?

    It is possible to combine the immigration office extension with a re-entry stamp extension? And if so do they need to be in a particular order?

    I know it’s a lot of questions but if you guys are able to answer any of them it would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!

    Scott

    April 21, 2015 at 5:55 pm
  • Jason T
    Reply

    Hi Eric
    Me and my wife are planning on traveling to thailand and travel all around eg. Chiang mai, Vietnam etc and want to stay roughly 1 year then come back to Australia for a couple of months and then do it again. What would you suggest for us in the way of visa’s that just want a long holiday. Our ages are 44 and 43 with no children. Thank you in advance

    April 30, 2015 at 9:07 pm
  • What an informative article! My partner and I will be coming to Chiang Mai on a tourist visa in September and will definitely put this information to use.

    Quick question – and please feel free to redirect me if this info is available elsewhere (I just can’t find it!). On the Thai visa application it asks for the dates of issue and expiry for your visa. I’m guessing the former refers to your date of entry (right?), but I’m a little confused about the latter… We are applying for a double-entry visa, so should I simply write down whatever date is 120 days after our date of entry? Or 60 days? And what about the “duration of proposed stay”? 120 days? A little guidance would be invaluable.

    🙂

    July 2, 2015 at 8:13 pm

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