A Thai Elite Visa Provides Privileged and Tax Free Access to Thailand – How Much does it Cost?
Thailand recently introduced the Thai Elite Visa for those wishing to take advantage of staying in this beautiful, friendly country. The Thai Elite Visa enables you to live in Thailand for up to 20 years and costs around $3,500 per year.
What Exactly Does a Thai Elite Visa Offer?
For the money, you pay you will also receive a series of discounts in Thailand and get special treatment on arrival in Thailand. You’ll be met by a representative and whisked through the airport immigration formalities.
The Thailand Elite Visa gives you the right to spend as long as you want in Thailand for the length of the visa. The minimum length of the visa is 5 years and the maximum is 20 years. There’s no obligation to spend any time there at all if you want to simply use this as a backup plan. There are no obligations to buy property in Thailand or maintain a home there.
What are the 7 Criteria to Obtain a Thai Elite Visa?
The criteria to obtain a Thailand Elite Visa are as follows:
- Not having been sentenced to imprisonment in any country unless it was for negligence
- Not having been declared bankrupt
- Not having been declared a person of unsound mind, incompetence or quasi- competence
- Not having previously overstayed more than one visa in Thailand
- Being allowed to stay in Thailand in accordance with the immigration laws of Thailand
- Holding a foreign passport
- Being sui juris under Thai law
What are the Tax Benefits of a Thai Elite Visa?
Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of the Thai Elite Visa is the tax exemptions that come with making Thailand your permanent residence. You can become a tax resident of Thailand provided you spend more than 180 days per year in the country. When you’re a tax resident of Thailand you will only be taxed on income you earn outside Thailand if you remit it to Thailand in the same year that you earned it.
For example, if you earn $1m outside Thailand in 2021 but don’t send it to Thailand until 2022 it will be completely free of Thai taxes. In any case, it’s unlikely you’d want to remit all your income to Thailand. If you have income overseas whether that’s investment income or an online business where you’re able to work remotely, living in Thailand with the Thai Elite Visa could be a perfect scenario. You can enjoy the delights of Thailand and be based in Asia living free of any taxes.
The Thailand Elite Visa could also be an excellent backup plan for anyone who doesn’t want to relocate yet but wants to have an easy visa in their back pocket and a nice place to go without too much bureaucracy or extensive residence requirements.
Can I get Citizenship in Thailand?
Unfortunately, the Thai Elite Visa doesn’t offer a path to citizenship in Thailand. Thai citizenship is notoriously difficult for foreigners to obtain. Under other visas, it’s possible to apply for citizenship after being resident in Thailand for 10 years. It’s not possible to apply for citizenship no matter how long you’ve spent there under the Thai Elite Visa.
All things considered, I’d say that the Thai Elite Visa is a good opportunity if you enjoy spending time in Thailand. It’s relatively cheap, not too bureaucratic and it affords you other privileges and discounts. It’s a serious attempt by Thailand to attract wealthy foreigners to their country which is likely to be followed by other countries in the future.
What are the Privileges I Receive With a Thai Elite Visa?
As well as allowing you to stay in Thailand for up to 20 years the Thai elite visa offers a range of other benefits and privileges. The most important for regular travellers will be VIP access at the main airports in Thailand. You’ll have access to a special assistant at the airport who’ll help you get through the airport formalities quickly. You also have access to VIP lounges at the main airports in Thailand.
In addition, there’s a whole range of access and discounts to the country’s top spas and golf courses. There are also special arrangements with law firms, property agents, and jet charter companies. If you’re going to be spending time in Thailand as a high net-worth resident it would seem to be a no-brainer to get this kind of visa.
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