Home National News Thailand requires 3 million baht insurance for non-immigrant visas

Thailand requires 3 million baht insurance for non-immigrant visas

In a review of the rules on non-immigrant visas, foreigners will now need to have a minimum of 3 million baht in health insurance to qualify for long-term stay in Thailand, 8 times more than the 400,000 baht required to date.

The new rule was announced yesterday by Deputy Health Minister Satit Pittacha, who said the increase in insurance is needed to ensure that should a traveller become ill during their one-year stay in the country, more insurance money is needed to guarantee that they receive the right treatment.

The vastly increased insurance requirement would apply to foreigners with non-immigrant visas, including O visas and A visas, who stay in Thailand for up to one year. Due to strict border controls that closed access to almost everyone, only 3,768 ex-pats and foreign travellers were granted a non-immigrant visa in all of 2021 and 2020.

The health ministry says insurance policies can be purchased in their home country or domestically within Thailand, but stipulate that coverage must retain a minimum of 3 million baht or its equivalent if the policy is denominated in a foreign currency.

The announcement is likely to be met with dismay and backlash from international travellers hoping to make Thailand their home for the long haul, or at least for a year. It is especially difficult for those hoping to retire in Thailand, as insurance premiums are notorious for skyrocketing once the applicant passes a certain age, increasing exponentially with age on the assumption that older people are more prone to illness and accidents. .

As Thailand devises plan after plan to lure tourists back, many complain that the complicated importation process, rising costs and constant changes in immigration policy are not in favour of international travellers, while also driving expatriates out of the country. hunt for countries that DO embrace them warmly and do everything they can to court them

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