Thailand’s Immigration Bureau chief said yesterday foreigners in Thailand still stranded in Thailand by the Covid-19 will be allowed to extend their says. The Immigration Chief said foreigners can apply for an extended short stay after their visas expire on July 31
Foreign tourists who are unable to leave Thailand will be given a visa extension grace period from Aug 1 to Sept 26 to apply to stay for a specified period, said Pol Lt Gen Sompong Chingduang, said.
Furthermore, if they do not obtain extensions and are still in the country after Sept 26, they would face legal action and be blacklisted.
He urged foreigners to contact the Immigration bureau as soon as possible. Above all to prepare for their next steps in order to avoid crowding. Especially when the Sept 26 deadline approached.
Reason and proof required to stay
Foreign visitors must specify their reasons and submit necessary documents when seeking to renew short-term visas. The new short-term visas will be granted for 30 days, he told the Bangkok Post.
“If they are unable to return because there are no flights or due to lockdown measures in their countries, they must submit proof. The granting of a short-stay visa will be made on a case-by-case basis,” Pol Lt Gen Sompong said.
He also said the Immigration bureau had asked the Council of State about the proposed short stay. They advised that the Interior Ministry could issue an announcement.
Even more the Interior Ministry’s visa relief measures for foreign visitors would be submitted to the cabinet for approval next Tuesday. The bureau would later issue guidelines on how to apply for a visa extension.
Those who planned to return to their home countries did not need to contact the Immigration bureau. However they also had to leave Thailand by Sept 26.
He estimated that between 300,000 and 400,000 foreigners were stranded in the kingdom due to the Covid-19 lockdown.
The government earlier automatically extended their visas until July 31, 2020. Foreigners must still inform authorities where they are staying.