Sigh of relief for Thailand Covid visa extenders


Visitors to Thailand can breathe a sigh of relief as the deadline for applications for the 60-day special visa extension for Covid is now November 26.

Immigration authorities have confirmed that the deadline for applications for a 60-day extension of the special Covid visa is now November 26. This replaces the old deadline of September 27 and effectively extends the right to stay until the start of the new year.

The Covid extensions were introduced 18 months ago and have allowed short-stay tourists to stay here, even though their initial authorization had expired, upon request to the immigration office. The reason has always been the dislocation of air travel schedules and the closure of land borders due to the pandemic.

Numbers in Pattaya areas have declined as most of the Covid extenders have already left. But there are groups of Europeans on vacation and even tourists from neighboring countries who still hold out. Immigration officials declined to give local figures, but said they were “in the hundreds rather than thousands”.

Most Pattaya expatriates hold nonimmigrant visas, such as retirement or marriage, or have a work permit or permanent resident status. There are separately workers from Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia with authorized permits. None of these groups are covered by the Covid Extension Discretion which was designed strictly with trapped tourists in mind.

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