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Little-known subtitle 2.8 Non-Immigrant ED visa?


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I came across a guy in the Thai Visa Advice group on Facebook today saying that he can arrange a type of ED visa that doesn't require the foreigner to actually attend school or study anywhere. I inquired with him about it in private, but he wasn't able to give any info that officially states that the visa holder wouldn't need to do any education. He says it's something that is only known to certain people and there isn't any info online about it.

 

As you can imagine, I'm not too keen on the idea of basing my entire relocation on the word of any single visa agent that he'll sell me an education visa that doesn't require me to study. 

 

This same guy might be on this forum. (If so, I'm sorry buddy but you just didn't offer solid enough info, so now I'm trying to dig up more info on this. I'm not saying I don't believe you, but I need more to believe in before I move across the planet based on what you're selling.)

 

Do any of you know about this semi-secret subtitle 2.8 version? Is it for real? Would it be any better than what I am otherwise planning to probably do, which is to enter visa-exempt and then obtain a non-O for purposes of retirement? This same agent also stated that the retirement visa costs 45,000 THB a year, and that was the first I've ever heard of that as well. I don't even know if he was referring to the official government visa fee or his own charge for services.

Edited by PadPrikKhing
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Why look for bypass.

Obtain non O retirement in own country if available.

If not then enter on tourist visa and obtain non O in Thailand.

Subsequently obtain 12 month extension based on retirement. Extension cost is 1900 baht.

You will need 800k in Thai bank account or use income method.

To open Thai bank account quickly use agent to assist with bank account.

If you can't afford that then don't relocate.

If the plan is only to stay year or so then an option of agent is possible. Extension based on retirement cheapest. 

Edited by DrJack54
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The 2.8 is a reference to a clause in the immigration order for extensions.

 

"2.8 In the case study in a government educational institution:

Each permission shall be granted for a period certified by educational institution, which shall not exceed one year"

 

Not sure how a agent could arrange such a extension.

The 45k baht mentioned is for the agent to arrange a extension based upon retirement with no financial proof needed.

The fee for any extension of stay done at immigration is 1900 baht.

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25-30k Agent Fee is Market Rate for Retirement Visa & Extn ( min. 15months)

Inc. Local Immi Stamp ( not “Chonburi”) & All Reporting & No Financials.

Use only Agent Personally Recommended and Ideally an Immi. Officer.

 

ED Visa / Extn. max. 12 mths. Use Only Recommended Private Language School as “Agent”.

Attendance technically required & audited but in practice not enforced.

Buying the Right or Option to Learn.No Financials. 45-48 k Total. 

 

First Option way superior on Cost Value Duration, if available, unless you actually want language tuition.

Note: All Immi Passport Stamps, compliant with above, & also on Immi. Computer, are “ Legal “.

Irrelevant “how” they got there. Near Zero Audit / Challenge Risk.No matter what any righteous

“ experts” here may say……

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Quote

 

Why look for bypass.

Obtain non O retirement in own country if available.

If not then enter on tourist visa and obtain non O in Thailand.

Subsequently obtain 12 month extension based on retirement.

You will need 800k in Thai bank account or use income method.

To open Thai bank account quickly use agent to assist with bank account.

If you can't afford that then don't relocate.

If the plan is only to stay year or so then an option of agent is possible. Extension based on retirement cheapest. 

 

I can afford the 800k thing, but what I keep reading is that arriving visa-exempt (edited, sorry) and then obtaining a non-O based on retirement is a better way to do it because one avoids the 800k requirement and the insurance requirements are not as heavy. That sounds good, I mean who would want to keep 800k in a Thai account if one didn't absolutely have to?

 

But I can't seem to turn up what the Non-O does require in the way of financial assurance, because that visa type is inactivated on the thaiconsulatela.org website (the most relevant source for me to be looking at as a Californian, I gather). When I mouse over it, the selection ("pointing hand") cursor disappears, suggesting that it's unavailable.

Edited by PadPrikKhing
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3 minutes ago, PadPrikKhing said:

I keep reading is that arriving non-exempt and then obtaining a non-O based on retirement is a better way to do it because one avoids the 800k requirement and the insurance requirements are not as heavy.

Avoiding the 800K is incorrect (although you have options such as 65K transferred in monthly or combination). Insurance correct in that you avoid the 40/400K insurance that is required for Non O-A and subsequent extension (currently no insurance requirement for Non O based on retirement).

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15 minutes ago, WhiteBuffaloATM said:

25-30k Agent Fee is Market Rate for Retirement Visa & Extn ( min. 15months)

Inc. Local Immi Stamp ( not “Chonburi”) & All Reporting & No Financials.

Use only Agent Personally Recommended and Ideally an Immi. Officer.

Okay, that's great info, thanks. But when you said "Retirement Visa" there were you referring to the non-immigrant O, obtained in-country after having arrived visa-exempt? That would be okay, I could do that. I just need a path that is explained fully to me. I believe I would rather pay $1000 USD per year than have to put 800k THB in the bank for the duration of my stay (which is how I'd do it if I did it), if that is indeed what you're saying.

 

Quote

ED Visa / Extn. max. 12 mths. Use Only Recommended Private Language School as “Agent”.

Attendance technically required & audited but in practice not enforced.

Buying the Right or Option to Learn.No Financials. 45-48 k Total. 

 

First Option way superior on Cost Value Duration, if available, unless you actually want language tuition.

Note: All Immi Passport Stamps, compliant with above, & also on Immi. Computer, are “ Legal “.

Irrelevant “how” they got there. Near Zero Audit / Challenge Risk.No matter what any righteous

“ experts” here may say……

By "cost value duration" are you referring to the same metric I did above, i.e. it feels smarter to pay $1000 per year stayed than to have to park $24,000 in a bank account?

Edited by PadPrikKhing
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29 minutes ago, Salerno said:

Avoiding the 800K is incorrect (although you have options such as 65K transferred in monthly or combination). Insurance correct in that you avoid the 40/400K insurance that is required for Non O-A and subsequent extension (currently no insurance requirement for Non O based on retirement).

Here is a screenshot of the requirements as they appear on the thaiembdc.org website. It says nothing about 800k or any other financial security element. You can see how I keep getting confused over and over... someone says one thing on a forum, then I go look it up and the thing that was said is nowhere to be found.

 

I'm also confused about why they call the O a "retirement" thing when it says it's good for 90 days. Who the hell retires to a country that they're only allowed 90 days in?

 

My whole thing is that if I'm going to uproot my whole life, sell the car, put everything in storage, etc., I need to KNOW that I'm going to be able to stay for at least a year, and that when that year is up that I'll also be able to renew it again for another year, and maybe on and on every year.

 

screenshot-non-immigrant-O-thaiembdc-site.png

Edited by PadPrikKhing
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24 minutes ago, PadPrikKhing said:

Here is a screenshot of the requirements as they appear on the thaiembdc.org website. It says nothing about 800k or any other financial security element.

That is the initial Non O visa you can use to enter Thailand (90 days initially). When actually in Thailand, you then apply for an extension to stay (12 months) based on that visa for reason of retirement. The extension to stay is what imposes the financial requirements (800K in a Thai bank 2 months prior to applying for extension and 3 months after it is granted, then maintain a minimum of 400K for the other 7 months).

 

If you enter visa exempt you can still get to the 12 month extension to stay but you go: visa exempt > Non O > extension of stay.

 

Given you are looking at the Washington Embassy site I assume you are American therefore, the 65K a month option isn't available for the first year as far as I understand it (due to the American Embassy in Thailand no longer issuing income letters). But, you could transition in the second year by transferring 65K per month (or work out the best combination method option for you) and supplying the 12 month transfers as proof at the renewal. 

 

Edited by Salerno
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33 minutes ago, PadPrikKhing said:

I'm also confused about why they call the O a "retirement" thing when it says it's good for 90 days. Who the hell retires to a country that they're only allowed 90 days in?

It is a non-o visa based upon qualifying for it due to being 50 or over for retirement. To stay one year after the 90 days you have to apply for a one year extension of stay based upon retirement that requires the 800k baht in a Thai bank or proof of  65k baht income.

To apply for the non-o visa at immigration you need 800k baht in the bank on the day you apply or proof of 65, baht income. Requirements for it is here. https://bangkok.immigration.go.th/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/8-1.pdf

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11 hours ago, ubonjoe said:

It is a non-o visa based upon qualifying for it due to being 50 or over for retirement. To stay one year after the 90 days you have to apply for a one year extension of stay based upon retirement that requires the 800k baht in a Thai bank or proof of  65k baht income.

To apply for the non-o visa at immigration you need 800k baht in the bank on the day you apply or proof of 65, baht income. Requirements for it is here. https://bangkok.immigration.go.th/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/8-1.pdf

Okay thanks Joe, I understand that now (finally!). As I said before, I don't have a problem with the 800k-in-the-bank requirement. I just want to know how to do this the best way. I will not have a qualifying income to declare, so it will have to be the 800k deposit.

 

So now that I understand that, the question becomes: should I enter visa-exempt and then go for the Non-O (and subsequent extensions), or should I obtain the non-O from the US first? The main difference I see at first glance is that the non-O obtained from the US first allows 90 days initially, and the visa-exempt entry is 30 days, right? That 90 versus 30 days definitely sounds like an advantage because it would give more time to get the Thai bank account squared away. 

 

Regarding the non-O versus O-A route, I notice that the O doesn't require a police certificate whereas the O-A does. That's a concern for me because I have a 27-year-old misdemeanor charge on my record which has been expunged, but I have no idea how Thai immigration reacts to old, expunged criminal charges, and no one has been able to address that question for me at all. The requirements for the O-A say (paraphrasing) "...must have no criminal record in Thailand and in their country of residence." Having a decades-old expunged charge is legally the same as having no record (at least in the US it is), but it will still show up on the record, so I'm afraid the Thais will ignore the expungment aspect and just deny me on the basis that there is something on the criminal record. Can you speak to this aspect, please, if you know anything about it?

 

My number one priority is that I want to use whatever is going to be the most uneventful and reliable to obtain and renew. If I do this at all, I want to be able to stay for years, and I want to be able to travel to other countries and come back into Thailand several times a year.

Edited by PadPrikKhing
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11 hours ago, Salerno said:

That is the initial Non O visa you can use to enter Thailand (90 days initially). When actually in Thailand, you then apply for an extension to stay (12 months) based on that visa for reason of retirement. The extension to stay is what imposes the financial requirements (800K in a Thai bank 2 months prior to applying for extension and 3 months after it is granted, then maintain a minimum of 400K for the other 7 months).

 

If you enter visa exempt you can still get to the 12 month extension to stay but you go: visa exempt > Non O > extension of stay.

 

Given you are looking at the Washington Embassy site I assume you are American therefore, the 65K a month option isn't available for the first year as far as I understand it (due to the American Embassy in Thailand no longer issuing income letters). But, you could transition in the second year by transferring 65K per month (or work out the best combination method option for you) and supplying the 12 month transfers as proof at the renewal. 

 

Thanks for clarifying that. The visa exempt > Non O > extension of stay route sounds fine to me as a way of doing it, but would there be enough time to get the 800k into the bank and "season" it and all of that in the 30 days that the visa-exempt entry provides? I get confused by the timing of all that.

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There is one good reason why you may want to "convert" to the Non O after arriving in Thailand. The reason is the insurance requirements. If arriving visa exempt, you need only 30 days of Covid insurance and that is it. If you apply for a Non O visa, the embassy is almost certainly going to want to see 400k/40k baht general health insurance. In addition, for the COE you will need 90-day Covid insurance.

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9 minutes ago, PadPrikKhing said:

would there be enough time to get the 800k into the bank and "season" it and all of that in the 30 days that the visa-exempt entry provides?

It would have been better if they kept the 45 days but swings and round abouts, hopefully from 1 November it's max 1 day quarantine. 

 

It can be tight if you run into problems opening a bank account. To go from exempt to Non O you need to apply with 15 days left on your existing entry and have the 800K in the bank on the day you apply; so, just short of two weeks to get that sorted. You have 2 plans of attack if banks are being a pain:

 

1 If you are running out of time you can always get a 30 day extension on your visa exempt (costs 1900 Bht), or

2 Throw some money at an agent to get it done. Current price is around 3500 Bht.

 

Personally, I'd probably hit the streets for 3 or 4 days and if no luck go for option 2. Given the cost, possibly even go that route from day 1 to save the messing around in your first week back in LOS.

 

Then it's just a case of transferring the money in and applying for a Non O (with at least 15 days left on your permission to stay and costs 2000 Bht) which gives you 90 days.

 

Then 60 days later you apply for the extension based on retirement (1900 Bht) and then you're all set to live happily ever after doing annual extensions. Or until you get bitter and twisted like a certain cohort on here of course 😎 

 

In between the annual extensions of course you've got the 90 day reporting either in person, online (can't do first one online) or by mail (and depending on IO, possibly going back to show you kept 800K for three months).

 

Depending how often you intend travelling, when able, you need to get either a single (1000 Bht) or a multiple (3800 Bht) reentry permit to keep your extension alive. Get it from IO when your extension is granted or can get it at Swampy on the way out.

 

---

 

You could of course get a Non O from the US and miss out most of the above, again a personal choice, me I prefer just jumping on the plane without messing around with visas and Embassies but you have the eVisa option now that cuts out the hassle of mailing passports back and forth so could be worth it if you don't like winging it so much.

 

Re your question about Non O-A, are you sure expunged show up on records from the States? If so that kind of sucks and makes it pointless; pretty sure it wouldn't show on any other countries record. Can't remember reading any reports on it I'm afraid so no idea if it would affect your application for an O-A.

 

If you're fairly set on setting up base in LOS and can afford to just dump 800K in a Thai bank I'd forget about O-A. The plus side of the O-A is you can basically get 2 years out of it and no need to transfer money to Thailand, the downside is the extra paperwork (police check etc.) and you get stuck with the extra insurance requirement from then on if you use it after the 2 years for an extension. You could of course just let it lapse at the end of the 2nd year and get a new one but then you run the risk of requirements changing - been a while since it went to 800K and given the past couple of years, and noises being made even prior to Covid you never know. Previous rulings obviously not any type of guarantee of future but those already on extensions where grandfathered when it was changed.

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7 hours ago, PadPrikKhing said:

Thanks for clarifying that. The visa exempt > Non O > extension of stay route sounds fine to me as a way of doing it, but would there be enough time to get the 800k into the bank and "season" it and all of that in the 30 days that the visa-exempt entry provides? I get confused by the timing of all that.

There is not seasoning requirement to apply for the non-o visa at immigration. it only has to be in a Thai bank on the day you apply.

If the 30 days is not enough time you can apply for a 30 day extension to meet the minimum of 15 days remaining on your permit to stay requirement when you apply for the visa.

When you apply for the one year extension for 2 months on the day you apply.

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20 hours ago, Salerno said:

It would have been better if they kept the 45 days but swings and round abouts, hopefully from 1 November it's max 1 day quarantine. 

 

It can be tight if you run into problems opening a bank account. To go from exempt to Non O you need to apply with 15 days left on your existing entry and have the 800K in the bank on the day you apply; so, just short of two weeks to get that sorted. You have 2 plans of attack if banks are being a pain:

 

1 If you are running out of time you can always get a 30 day extension on your visa exempt (costs 1900 Bht), or

2 Throw some money at an agent to get it done. Current price is around 3500 Bht.

 

Personally, I'd probably hit the streets for 3 or 4 days and if no luck go for option 2. Given the cost, possibly even go that route from day 1 to save the messing around in your first week back in LOS.

 

Then it's just a case of transferring the money in and applying for a Non O (with at least 15 days left on your permission to stay and costs 2000 Bht) which gives you 90 days.

 

Then 60 days later you apply for the extension based on retirement (1900 Bht) and then you're all set to live happily ever after doing annual extensions. Or until you get bitter and twisted like a certain cohort on here of course 😎 

 

In between the annual extensions of course you've got the 90 day reporting either in person, online (can't do first one online) or by mail (and depending on IO, possibly going back to show you kept 800K for three months).

 

Depending how often you intend travelling, when able, you need to get either a single (1000 Bht) or a multiple (3800 Bht) reentry permit to keep your extension alive. Get it from IO when your extension is granted or can get it at Swampy on the way out.

 

---

 

You could of course get a Non O from the US and miss out most of the above, again a personal choice, me I prefer just jumping on the plane without messing around with visas and Embassies but you have the eVisa option now that cuts out the hassle of mailing passports back and forth so could be worth it if you don't like winging it so much.

 

Re your question about Non O-A, are you sure expunged show up on records from the States? If so that kind of sucks and makes it pointless; pretty sure it wouldn't show on any other countries record. Can't remember reading any reports on it I'm afraid so no idea if it would affect your application for an O-A.

 

If you're fairly set on setting up base in LOS and can afford to just dump 800K in a Thai bank I'd forget about O-A. The plus side of the O-A is you can basically get 2 years out of it and no need to transfer money to Thailand, the downside is the extra paperwork (police check etc.) and you get stuck with the extra insurance requirement from then on if you use it after the 2 years for an extension. You could of course just let it lapse at the end of the 2nd year and get a new one but then you run the risk of requirements changing - been a while since it went to 800K and given the past couple of years, and noises being made even prior to Covid you never know. Previous rulings obviously not any type of guarantee of future but those already on extensions where grandfathered when it was changed.

correct me if im wrong but he should not have any problem if he goes to the bank with a contract of renting an appartment/condo + his passport? in my experience the easiest banks are kasikorn (the green) and bangkok bank.

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43 minutes ago, drori said:

correct me if im wrong but he should not have any problem if he goes to the bank with a contract of renting an appartment/condo + his passport? in my experience the easiest banks are kasikorn (the green) and bangkok bank.

The bank branches vary enormously in their willingness to open an account for a foreigner, and they are more reluctant with some nationalities than others. In general, it has become harder and harder. Mentioning a willingness to buy some fairly unattractive life insurance for around 3,000 baht or so if you can open an account will sometimes work. The bank employee gets a commission on the insurance.

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9 minutes ago, BritTim said:

The bank branches vary enormously in their willingness to open an account for a foreigner, and they are more reluctant with some nationalities than others. In general, it has become harder and harder. Mentioning a willingness to buy some fairly unattractive life insurance for around 3,000 baht or so if you can open an account will sometimes work. The bank employee gets a commission on the insurance.

im fairly sure that one of the branches will except him if he at least has a contract for a rent of an appartment. when i opened my account it was about 3-4 years ago and everyone said kasikorn was the easiest back then. anyway a bit of a showoff comment but i have no problem waging money that he will find a branch that will open for him an account in 1 day.

 

p.s. i am with an israeli nationality so i guess not the "best" relationships with thailand? still had no problem.

Edited by drori
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18 hours ago, ubonjoe said:

There is not seasoning requirement to apply for the non-o visa at immigration. it only has to be in a Thai bank on the day you apply.

If the 30 days is not enough time you can apply for a 30 day extension to meet the minimum of 15 days remaining on your permit to stay requirement when you apply for the visa.

When you apply for the one year extension for 2 months on the day you apply.

Thanks, that is a big help. Couldn't I just go about trying to get a bank account within the first few days I arrive in the country?

 

Also, I didn't understand the last sentence you wrote there. Is it missing a word or two? It sounds important, but it's not making sense to me grammatically, sorry. Could you please rephrase it?

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4 hours ago, drori said:

correct me if im wrong but he should not have any problem if he goes to the bank with a contract of renting an appartment/condo + his passport? in my experience the easiest banks are kasikorn (the green) and bangkok bank.

So it sounds like I would have to immediately get down to Krabi or Hua Hin or wherever I have decided I want to live, and find a place to rent extremely rapidly, and that the reason I'd have to be in such a hurry to find a place is because I would need to have the contract for that in hand when I go to a bank to get a bank account so that I can do my transfer as soon as possible... because I can't get the non-O without having the money in the bank.

 

I was hoping not to have to select the place I'm going to live in a huge hurry. But if that's how it is, then it's how it is.

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On 10/17/2021 at 11:30 AM, Salerno said:

It would have been better if they kept the 45 days but swings and round abouts, hopefully from 1 November it's max 1 day quarantine. 

 

[rest of post snipped]

Thanks for taking the time to post all that.

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47 minutes ago, PadPrikKhing said:

So it sounds like I would have to immediately get down to Krabi or Hua Hin or wherever I have decided I want to live, and find a place to rent extremely rapidly, and that the reason I'd have to be in such a hurry to find a place is because I would need to have the contract for that in hand when I go to a bank to get a bank account so that I can do my transfer as soon as possible... because I can't get the non-O without having the money in the bank.

 

I was hoping not to have to select the place I'm going to live in a huge hurry. But if that's how it is, then it's how it is.

i still recommend on trying kasikorn bank (the green bank) as people including me seem to think its easier to open there an account for foreigners. when i opened my account i didnt even have a contract as i was renting an appartment service which is monthly but without contract. they just asked for my passport + address.

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10 hours ago, drori said:

correct me if im wrong but he should not have any problem if he goes to the bank with a contract of renting an appartment/condo + his passport? in my experience the easiest banks are kasikorn (the green) and bangkok bank.

It shouldn't be that much of a problem but certainly seems to get harder every year according to reports. Just a case of pounding the pavement to find an accommodating branch. Kbank and Bangkok Bank do seem to get better reviews depending on where in Thailand you are.

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9 hours ago, drori said:

i opened my account it was about 3-4 years ago and everyone said kasikorn was the easiest back then

Opening a bank account has changed a LOT over recent years.

Not straight forward with a tourist visa or visa exempt. 

 

@PadPrikKhing given the time factor I suggest that you use agent for opening Bank account.

Siam Legal would be good starting point, some positive reports from posters. They use Bangkok Bank. Quick process.

Personally I have Extension from a non O and even so had trouble opening Bank account a year ago.

 

Bangkok Bank wanted something from my Oz embassy along with something from my bank in Oz.

All that and I had a long term rental contract and 12 month extension etc.

Yes Kasikorn were far more helpful however think not automatic from visa exempt entry.

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11 hours ago, BritTim said:

The bank branches vary enormously in their willingness to open an account for a foreigner, and they are more reluctant with some nationalities than others. In general, it has become harder and harder. Mentioning a willingness to buy some fairly unattractive life insurance for around 3,000 baht or so if you can open an account will sometimes work. The bank employee gets a commission on the insurance.

American customers opening accounts are as welcome at foreign banks as emails in your inbox from Nigerian princes, although perhaps for different reasons.  

An American expat in Thailand doesn't look like a desirable customer to Thai banks because though we may not wish to do so we bring substantial "baggage" to the table.  Having American customers means the bank has to abide by US regulations, send information to the IRS among other things, and exposes the bank to Draconian penalties should anything go wrong.  So there's very little upside and a potentially big downside to opening an account for an American expat.

Some branches will do it though, especially if they already have American customers (in for a penny, in for a pound), if they are big branches and have English-speaking staff.  You may have to try a few branches before you have success.  Bangkok Bank and Krungsri Bank are two of the easiest banks at which to open accounts, I believe.

Finally, in the line of incentives.  It shouldn't be necessary, but if you give a wavering bank employee the opportunity to earn a little commission it can sometimes work.  Bangkok Bank actually has a decent little accident insurance policy that covers motorcycles.  I purchase it every year even though I don't have to, PA 1st Smart is the name.  Unfortunately, I can vouch for the fact that they pay out very well. 😉 :

https://www.bangkokbank.com/en/Personal/My-Family-and-Me/Bancassurance/BKI/PA-1st/PA-1st-Smart

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