Recent immigration changes have some expats screaming over at knob-forum that the sky is falling.
It won’t be that easy for a lot of expats to stay, but probably half the long-term expats or more are married to a Thai or have a child with a Thai national. Visas are not hard to get in that case.
There are even crackdowns on the ED visas. I’m sure they aren’t going away completely, they are just trying to get rid of the bogus schools. If you aren’t with a decent school that actually holds classes – get into one. Not that difficult.
If you’re working for a school and teaching English and they haven’t done the paperwork for the correct visa and work permit – get on them to do so, or change schools. Again, not that difficult. I never understood teachers that accept positions at schools like this. Then again, I haven’t looked much into how few have valid bachelor degrees either.
Anyway, the point of this post is not to tell you how easy it is now to get a valid visa. There are still plenty of people that cannot or will not get one.
The point is, though the sky is falling today, tomorrow may be another day altogether. Changes in immigration policy are flitty like the wind, and though it appears tough today, in a couple weeks or months something will change. It will all definitely change when a new government takes over – in a year? 18 months? Whenever.
So, it might be time for a vacation from LOS. Go see Malaysia, Singapore, or what the hell – the Philippines and see what they have. Stay a few months, a year or so and then return to Thailand for business as usual.
My buddy Lee, from The Philippines just emailed me about the visa situation there being easy for expats…
“Free 21 days when you land here. Before the 21 days are up go to the Philippine Bureau of Immigration. Fill out the paperwork and get your 59 day visa and continue to renew every 59 days and you’re safe here until Thailand wants expats back or bans all non citizens to make ‘The China’ happy.”
So, there’s an option for you (us) when we get desperate. I’ve not been to the Philippines, but there are something like a million Americans alone over there. I just don’t know what I would eat. I’d spend all my income on finding western food I fear.