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COE and new news regards entering Thailand and going home to Isaan for retired resident


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06 10 2021  I know it is early to expect a definite answer but I wonder about whether the COE will remain in place.  When will residents be able to arrive at Suvarnabhumi Airport (w/o COE) with negative tests and just go home?  I have had 3 shots and will be getting a covid passport as well as having the mor Chana app up to date on my phone.  I have a retirement 'O' visa, pink card and yellow book and an agreeable bank balance.  Here are the instructions sent to me by 'R' (thank you) explaining how to apply for a COE.  (He has given me permission to post this).   How on earth can the authorities think that this will not be a bar to tourism.  In their whole 'Sandbox' scheme where are residents considered?  I spend over 1M THB annually in my local village buying things for our family and employing local people for various projects.  I don't want 'special treatment' but... 'Giz a brake Guv'.  There already is the TM6 issued on arrival and the immigration personnel already check identity and destination and money issues.  I can understand how they want to be careful about backpackers wandering around but why create so many problems for those who live here legally and have a home to go to?  Thanks for any comments.

 

 

Documents required for Certificate of Entry: 

 

1)    Colour Scan of Passport ID Page

2)    Copy of Marriage Certificate

3)    Colour Scan of Insurance Document which states you are insured to US$100,000 in the event of complications due to Covid-19

4)    Copy of SHABA Plus Booking Certificate (it has to be Plus, not just SHA)

5)    Copy of RETURN Flight Booking / Confirmation (return if visa exempt arrival) – Flights need to be ‘direct to Phuket’ (i.e. Qatar Airways / Emirates etc) – I’m not certain about transit options through Bangkok with Thai Airways (but I think they are the only airline which is permitting Sandbox transit passengers in Bangkok).

6)    Copy of PSAS PCR test booking

 

Securing Documents: 

1)    Hotel Bookings – Book the hotel (can be booked via Agoda etc) – the hotel may require the Agoda booking receipt (if they do, e-mail agoda for their specific receipt of payment < [email protected] >.

2)    The Hotel will E-mail the SHABA Hotel Booking Certificate which is required for the PCR Booking.

3)    Next Step: PCR Booking Web page: https://www.thailandpsas.com .

4)    Register and log in, submit the SHABA number (from the hotel SHABA certificate).

5)    Register flight arrival (there will be PCR test on arrival).

6)    Register PCR test on Day 6 (Nearest to Rawai is Kata Centre).

7)    Register PCR test on Day 12.

????    Pay online for the 3x PCR tests (about 8000 baht I think).

9)    Download the PSAS PCR Booking receipt (this will need to be submitted with the CoE application).

 

 

Process: 

1)    Log onto the following Website https://coethailand.mfa.go.th

2)    First Page: 

-       Country you are flying from: i.e. UK / France etc

-       Embassy Selection – Select your local Embassy in the country from which you are applying (i.e. London / Paris)

-       Types of Permitted Persons: 3 - Spouse  

-       Entering – Sandbox.

-       Which Sandbox – Phuket.

3)    Next page: No need to add name of agent etc: 

4)    Sign in with Name / Passport # etc.

5)    Contact details outside of Thailand (home address etc).

6)    Contact details inside Thailand (address of Wife etc & number).

7)    Contact Person in case of Emergency (Wife etc).

????    Vaccine Info: You will need your Vaccine certificate 

-       Thai issued vaccine certificate (if issued in Thailand)

-       Overseas vaccine certificate (if issued overseas)

9)    Attach documents:

-       Passport ID Page 

-       Extension of Stay Permission (scan of page)

-       Insurance  Certificate (see examples) 

-       Marriage Certificate

NOTE: (after drag and drop you have to click the upload icon on each image)

10) Attachments for further consideration (can leave this blank).

11) Submit all the info: 

12) You will receive an e-mail from the Thai Embassy informing you that your application for CoE has been confirmed, you will be given a 6 digit pin.

13) You will next receive an e-mail from the Thai Embassy, informing that you your application for CoE has been Pre-approved.

14) Log in to the Website https://coethailand.mfa.go.th – upload travel Data section,  use your PIN to log in.

15) Upload your Flight Details.

16) Input your reference number from the SHABA certificate (the accommodating will automatically come up).

17) Upload the PSAS PCR booking receipt.

18) If necessary upload insurance certificate (again – I didn’t need to do this). 

 

19) IF all is correct you will next receive an e-mail from the Thai Embassy informing that you your application for CoE has been approved – your CoE will be attached to that e-mail.

 

20) Arrival in Phuket – have  Smart Phone (charged) / download Mor Chana app 

 

Pre-Flight:

1)    Preflight PCR test (meeting time restrictions).

2)    Fill out the TM8 form (I’ve attached that).

3)    Have a paper copy of all documents with you.

 

Arrival: 

1)    Extremely well organised

2)    About 50 ppl in Hazmat suits to welcome you !

3)    Documents will be checked and rechecked !

4)    Use the QR code (on posters everywhere) and download the Mor Chana App onto smart phone (for Track and Trace). 

5)    Once the paperwork checks are complete go through Immigration

6)    Collect baggage as normal

7)    After the baggage hall and customs passengers will be guided towards the PCR test. 

????    Your Dad will be given a ‘website’ at which he can download the PCR test result (which should arrive that evening – within a few hours) – the PCR test result will also be e-mailed. 

9)    IF hotel has arranged transport they will be waiting after the PCR test area. 

10) SHA+ approved taxis are also there. 

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Currently I am in my 2nd stint in a ASQ hotel in BKK.  Yes the entire process of coming back into Thailand is a “pain in the ass”.  I do not see the COE, the mandatory insurance and the 72 hour PCR test going away anytime soon.  I believe the Thai Government is doing it’s due diligence in controlling who and when anyone enters the country(unlike the US Southern Border with Mexico).   At this point the COE is the only way to accomplish this.  The Health Insurance will stay in place because the last thing the Thai Government wants is for a foreigner to spend weeks in a hospital being treated for COVID 19 and not be able to pay for it(they have seen this movie before).  The need for the 72 hour PCR test is obvious.  

 

Tourism for any country will never go back to the way it was before the pandemic.  If you think it is difficult for anyone to enter Thailand, just look at Australia and New Zealand.  

 

This is just my opinion and it is based upon my two trips out of Thailand and then returning.  

 

 

Edited by sqwakvfr
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27 minutes ago, problemfarang said:

i also read somewhere that they will start to take tax starting from next month or other month

Correct - I think they are calling it ‘Arrival Tax’ - 500 baht. 

 

Its going to create chaos for those who arrive without any local currently and can’t use an ATM until outside of the baggage area !!!! 

 

The only common sense approach for this is to ‘write it’ into the cost of a ticket, but that makes it a lot harder for those in positions of power to get their fingers on the cash. 

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I did the entire process for family of 5 back in July.  What a nightmare keeping up with 5 sets of documents for the entire process of submitting thru travel.  Not to mention locked in hotel room 2 weeks with 3 screaming kids.

 

The family is safely tucked in at village and me back in Turkey for work.  I will not be returning until at minimum the quarantine is eliminated.

 

Any one who thinks a regular tourist will complete all these obstacles for couple week holiday in LOS is delusional.  Most especially when large number of places/countries are open and welcoming foreign tourists with open arms and very minimal intrusion,

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5)    Copy of RETURN Flight Booking / Confirmation (return if visa exempt arrival) – Flights need to be ‘direct to Phuket’ (i.e. Qatar Airways / Emirates etc) – I’m not certain about transit options through Bangkok with Thai Airways (but I think they are the only airline which is permitting Sandbox transit passengers in Bangkok).

 

?? I thought I had read that if you arrive on a Non -o visa example that the return portion was not required as you are saying in step 5 of COE list that you wrote. Can someone please confirm or not?  Thank you

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Thanks, so far....  There are new tweaks announced daily on the Thaiger YT news program.  Latest is 'apply for and get visa on arrival'.  With a COE and a few thousand baht.  I don't see the COE document as being the only way to responsibly manage who is arriving in the country.  Esp. legal residents.  Assuming that passports and visas are genuine that goes a long way to determining who the traveler is.  So immigration already know everything there is to know about us.  And that we are going home to our registered address.  Demanding a recent negative covid test result, along with proof of vaccination goes a long way to establishing the health of that resident traveler.  How many of the thousands who arrived in Phuket tested positive during their quarantine period?  Requiring residents to be tested at our local hospital within a week and report the results is not an unreasonable solution.   As opposed to effectively imprisoning us for a week or 2 while testing us at an extortionate price.  Lab rats in a cage.  The spread of covid does not often come from fully vaccinated foreign residents living quietly at their Thai homes.

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raptoria:  Sorry, I don't know anything about the directions that I posted.  It is a set of directions kindly sent to me by a person who has gone through the process several times.  I am hoping the whole thing will be binned by the time I need to come back in November.  

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6 hours ago, raptorea said:

5)    Copy of RETURN Flight Booking / Confirmation (return if visa exempt arrival) – Flights need to be ‘direct to Phuket’ (i.e. Qatar Airways / Emirates etc) – I’m not certain about transit options through Bangkok with Thai Airways (but I think they are the only airline which is permitting Sandbox transit passengers in Bangkok).

 

?? I thought I had read that if you arrive on a Non -o visa example that the return portion was not required as you are saying in step 5 of COE list that you wrote. Can someone please confirm or not?  Thank you

Red step 5 again: Copy of RETURN Flight Booking / Confirmation (return if visa exempt arrival)

 

If you plan to enter Visa exempt, you require an onward or return flight. 

 

A return flight or onward flight ticket is not required if you are entering with a Visa. 

 

 

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6 hours ago, notrub said:

Thanks, so far....  There are new tweaks announced daily on the Thaiger YT news program.  Latest is 'apply for and get visa on arrival'. 

Just to clarify and avoid confusion: If I’m not mistaken, its not visa on arrival, which is something different and only available to specific nationalities. 

 

Its an ‘Online Visa’ applied for at the Embassy in your country of application. Instead of having to send off your passport (or visit the Embassy) to have the Visa sticker affixed, the Visa is digital - you print it off and take a copy with you. Upon entering Thailand (Immigration), you hand the Immigration Office the Printed Paper (Digital) visa, the Immigration Office affixed the Visa Stamp.

 

This is a common sense move and removes the need to visit the embassy or send off your passport. I hope this continues after Covid-19 measures are relaxed. Many countries handle their visas this way. 

 

 

6 hours ago, notrub said:

With a COE and a few thousand baht.  I don't see the COE document as being the only way to responsibly manage who is arriving in the country.  Esp. legal residents.  Assuming that passports and visas are genuine that goes a long way to determining who the traveler is.  So immigration already know everything there is to know about us.  And that we are going home to our registered address.  Demanding a recent negative covid test result, along with proof of vaccination goes a long way to establishing the health of that resident traveler.  How many of the thousands who arrived in Phuket tested positive during their quarantine period?  Requiring residents to be tested at our local hospital within a week and report the results is not an unreasonable solution.   As opposed to effectively imprisoning us for a week or 2 while testing us at an extortionate price.  Lab rats in a cage.  The spread of covid does not often come from fully vaccinated foreign residents living quietly at their Thai homes.

Agreed.... I think things will develop like this. 

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They have not yet announced the details for the "opening" of Bangkok 1 November (and it is not sure to happen Nov 1, will depend on vaccination levels etc) but it will likely be similar to the Phuket Sandbox scheme i.e. require pre-paid accommodations for 7 days at approved hotels in Bangkok (bit without confinefment to the room, free movement outside), COVID tests, proof of COVID insurance etc.  There is no indication the COE will be abolished and indeed it cannot be until the entry requirements dwindle considerably.

 

You are certainly right that this will be a deterrent to tourism but it looks like they will have to find that out for themselves. Also, they may be satisfied to have tourism restart in just small numbers, gradually, at first.

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Thai immigration authorities know everything about me and 10's of thousands of other legally registered long term visa holders.  Others who hold such visas know exactly what I am referring to.  When the TM30(?) was in effect a friend went to BKK to a conference on behalf of the company he worked for.  He stayed in a hotel for 2 nights.  He came home went to bed and got up and went to work the following morning.  He got a panic call from his wife that afternoon from his wife.  The police were at his door in his small village (several cars) demanding his whereabouts and threatening his arrest if he did not go to the closest immigration office and report immediately.  This is the most extreme example I know of but, believe me, when we went out of province for a short trip last year we took a hotel in Buriram (90km from home) to be able to report the first thing the following morning.  This friend 'Bob' is a long time Thai resident, work permit, married (Thai), kids, house etc..  If they can create and enforce the nonsense that was the TM30 and then quickly cancel it, I find it hard to believe that they are short on imagination. 

 

There could easily be a simple form to fill in with name, address, passport# and visa details for residents returning home (there already is the TM6).  With all the supporting vaccination & test results too, of course.  Promising to visit the local hospital for tests and submitting results via the mor chana app is something that the police are equipped to enforce its compliance. Or, as with the TM30, we could make that trip and submit the results to the immigration office. 

 

All this 'sandbox' effort is to get tourists back into expensive resorts owned by influential individuals and companies.  We read the the Govt is being pressured by this 'Hotel Association' or that 'Tourism group' or 'The Confederation of Airline Companies' etc. and officials being told to loosen up the rules regarding visitors to 'sandbox' facilities.  The towns and villages in these areas are (it seems) still shut down and the many people are relying on food handouts to eat.

 

Covid is being allowed to spread in Thailand by ineffective Govt policies.  It is not the vaccinated tourists and Thai residents arriving from countries safer than Thailand who are bringing the pandemic here in greater numbers.  

 

Hard to get a fix on numbers but I googled the number of expats in Thailand and a 2018 study puts the number at well over 300,000 foreign nationals. Take that number, why not? If we all spend 1M THB annually (give or take) it comes to 300 billion THB total spent each and every year.  Much of this is spent in small towns and villages benefitting the local economy, not the billionaire hotel owners in the south.  That may be the real problem in creating a simplified entry system for registered residents, we don't further enrich the rich.

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