We go in detail what it takes financially to qualify for the Thailand Retirement Visa: https://baansmile.com/visas
Planning for Retirement
Just like how you plan for retirement in your home country, you should be doing that in preparation for retiring in Thailand. It’s also a good idea to do some long term planning for retiring to Thailand.
Most of you would have visited Thailand a few times before you decided to retire. If you’re visiting Thailand in the year before your retirement, open a bank account here in preparation.
Find out the cost of health insurance from multiple insurance providers -- not just one. You will need health insurance as a part of retiring in Thailand.
So the major qualification for the retirement visa is to show that you have an income of 65,000 Baht per month.
If you don’t have a pension, a salary or some other kind of monthly income and you have savings or investments, then you can put 800,000 Baht in a Thai bank account to show that you can afford to take care of yourself in Thailand. That’s about the same 65,000 THB per month.
However, you can also have a combination of the two types.
For example, you can have 400,000 in a deposit, and 32,000 in monthly income.
Or you could have 200,000 in a deposit and 50,000 Baht in monthly income.
So look at your finances and figure out how and where this money will come from.
Where should this money come from?
In all cases, you need to show that this money is coming from outside of Thailand. You do need to have a bank account in Thailand and the money needs to be in that bank account.
You cannot use a foreign bank account to prove you have income to live in Thailand.
If you have evidence of income of 65,000 Baht or more per month, then you have to prove it in a different way.
For most countries, an official letter from your Embassy will be enough.
However, If you are from the United Kingdom or the United States those embassies will not be providing those letters for you.
In that case, you have to have 800,000 Baht in your Thai bank account, or show monthly deposits of at least 65,000 Baht in your Thai bank account.
Can I use this money when I’m in Thailand?
The money is yours and always belongs to you.
It does not belong to the Thai government.
You can use it as you wish.
So here at Baan Smile, we get a lot of questions about health insurance.
Unfortunately we cannot answer these, since the price will change based on how old you are and what pre-existing health conditions you have.
But here is where planning ahead can help you.
If you’ve visited Thailand before and opened a bank account, then you can probably get a lower price health insurance policy from your bank. Just go ahead and ask them to see what options they have.
If you want help, contact us and we can ask your bank for you.
If you do not have a bank account here already, then go ahead to one of the health insurance providers located in Thailand or in your country.
There are a few cases where you can avoid the Health Insurance requirement, but we do not recommend you do that.
Even though medical services cost less in Thailand, depending on how serious your medical problem might be it could add up to quite a lot and bankrupt you.
So please get the health insurance.
As we said, you should request quotes from at least 3 different companies in Thailand and 3 different companies in your home country.
I’m sorry we could not give you prices -- because as we said, it will vary quite a lot depending on your age and pre-existing medical conditions.
So you have to do your research.
You do have to renew your retirement visa once per year.
In the first year, we recommend you use a visa agent to do it. And we actually help people with that service at Baan Smile.
But after the first year, it’s easy enough that you can do it on your own.
If you have the money in the bank, all you need to do is to fill the paperwork, include the copies of your passport and other requirements and you’re good to go.
The forms are in Thai and English, so it's pretty easy.
And the fees are only 1,900 Baht to renew for the year.
If you don’t want to bother, many visa agents can help you with this.
You also have to do your 90 day reporting. Which is declaring what your address and phone number is in Thailand. This is the hassle that no one likes to do.
But again, a visa agent can do it for you. Just give them your passport and they will handle it.
And if you need to travel in and out of Thailand, be sure to get a re-entry permit before you leave. The re-entry permit will cost 1,000 Baht per time, or you can get an unlimited re-entry permit for 3,800 baht per year.
If you don’t have this re-entry permit, your retirement visa will be cancelled when you leave or try to re-enter.
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